A Nigerian court has struck out parts of a petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, challenging the victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Bola Tinubu, in the February 2023 presidential election.
The court, the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal, ruled that the PDP failed to provide sufficient evidence to support its claims that Tinubu was unqualified to contest the election and that there were irregularities and malpractices in the election.
The court also ruled that the PDP failed to join Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State and one Friday Adejo, a local government chairman in Kogi State, as parties to the petition, even though they were accused of involvement in the alleged irregularities.
The ruling is a setback for the PDP, which had hoped to overturn Tinubu’s victory in the election. However, the ruling is also a victory for Tinubu and the APC, as it strengthens their position ahead of any potential appeal.
The PDP had argued that Tinubu was ineligible to contest the election because he did not meet the constitutional requirement of being a “natural born citizen” of Nigeria. The PDP also alleged that there were irregularities and malpractices in the election, including the use of fake voters’ cards and the manipulation of results.
The APC had argued that Tinubu was qualified to contest the election and that the election was conducted fairly and in accordance with the law.