Six states; Adamawa, Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo, and Sokoto, have sued the federal government in the Supreme Court over how the presidential and National Assembly elections were conducted, tabulated, and announced on February 25, 2023.
The All Progressives Congress candidate Bola Ahmed Tinubu was declared the victor of the presidential election on February 25. The States ask the Supreme Court to rule that this decision is invalid.
They claimed that the Chairman of INEC‘s announcement of the complete results of the presidential election at the National Collation Centre in Abuja was a clear breach of the Electoral Act.
They claim they are seeking a declaration that the presidential election and the National Assembly elections were not conducted in conformity with the electoral statute due to the non-uploading of the results from each of the 176,974 polling places nationwide.
Recall that on Wednesday, the INEC announced that Tinubu had won the presidential election.
However, the plaintiffs in the originating summons marked: SC/CV/354/2023 are specifically asking for an order of the apex court “directing a holistic review of all results so far announced by the Federal Government of Nigeria through the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) which were carried out other than through the manner prescribed by the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022, the INEC Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections, 2022; and the INEC Manual for Election Officials.
The suit filed by the Attorneys-General of Adamawa, Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo and Sokoto states has the Attorney-General of the Federation as sole respondent and was brought pursuant to Sections 6 (6) (a), 14 (2) (b), 153 (1) (F) and 232 (1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as Amended); 2. Sections 25 (1), (2) and 3; Sections 60 And 66 Of The Electoral Act, 2022.
According to the suit filed on February 28, by their lawyers, Prof Mike Ozekhome, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), the agents and officials of the Federal Government and INEC, failed to transmit the collated result as prescribed by the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022; the INEC Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections 2022; and the INEC Manual for Election Officials requiring transmission of the results by the use of Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) in flagrant breach of the relevant provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022; the INEC Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections, 2022; and the INEC Manual for Election Officials, 2023.
It was their submission that the “Non-compliance with the due process of law has led to a widespread agitation, violent protests, displeasure, and disapproval from a wide spectrum of the Nigerian populace, including international observers, political parties, well-meaning Nigerians and former Head of States of the Federal Republic of Nigeria”.
Among the issues raised for determination by the apex court were: Whether having regard to the provisions of Sections 25; 47(2); 60 (1), (2), (4) & (5); 62; 64(4)(a) & (b); 70; and 148 of the Electoral Act, 2022, governing the 2023 nationwide general elections, particularly paragraphs 38 of the INEC Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections, 2022; and paragraphs 2.8.4; 2.9.0; and 2.9.1 of the INEC Manual for Election Officials, 2023 thereof, the electronic transmission of votes collated at polling units and the use of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) in the transmission of collated result is made mandatory.
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