Peter Obi Fails To Present Another Witness Against Tinubu

The Labour Party presidential candidate Peter Obi has failed to present another witness against President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s victory at the election tribunal, saying two of his key staff are not feeling too well.

Recall that the the Presidential Election Petitions Court (PEPC) reconvened after a week on Tuesday to begin the definite hearing in the petitions by the presidential candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Labour Party (LP), alongside their parties, challenging Tinubu’s victory in the February 25 election.

At the Tuesday hearing the Labour Party had presented an Anambra-based lawyer, Lawrence Nwakaeti, as a witness tendering the certified true copy of a US district court judgement on alleged Tinubu’s  $460,000 drug case.

After cross-examination from Tinubu’s counsel, Wole Olanipekun, the proceedings were adjourned till today, Wednesday, May 31, 2023.

Meanwhile, counsel to Obi and the LP, Awa Kalu at the resumed hearing of case asked for an adjournment to June 1 for continuation.

He persuaded the court that two of his key staff members suddenly fell ill.

He said the indisposition of the duo, who were described as part of the engine room of his legal Secretariat, affected his plan to tender vital documents before the court to prove his allegation that the presidential election was rigged in favour of President Bola Tinubu of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC).

“My lords, our plan for today’s proceedings was to start with the presentation of our documents, but unfortunately, we had some unexpected development.

“The unexpected development concerns the sudden illness of two of our key staff, for which reason I am constrained to ask for an adjournment till tomorrow.

“It is with the greatest humility and apology that we make this application.

I assure my lords that we will be here tomorrow morning and we will proceed with vigour,” Prof. Kalu, SAN, pleaded.

Obi’s lawyer told the Justice Haruna Tsammani-led five-member panel that he had before the sitting commenced, informed President Tinubu’s lead counsel, Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN, about the development.

In his response, President Tinubu’s lawyer, Chief Olanipekun, SAN, told the court that he was not opposed to the request for an adjournment.

Likewise, Mr. Abubakar Mahmood, SAN, who appeared for the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, as well as counsel for the APC, Prince Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, said they were equally not opposed to the request.

However, the respondents prayed the court to minus a day from the three weeks that was originally slated for Obi to present his case.

In a brief ruling, Justice Tsammani acceded to the application and adjourned the petition till Thursday.

By Temitope Hassan