PEPC: PDP Accuses Tinubu, APC Of Intimidating Judiciary

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the All Progressives Congress (APC) of pre-emptively intimidating the judiciary on the outcome of the presidential election petition. 

PDP said the written address by Tinubu’s lawyer to the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC) amounts to a threat.

The national publicity secretary, Hon Debo Ologunagba said the statement by the lawyers in the said written address threatening crisis and anarchy in the country in the event of the Court ruling that their clients did not meet the Constitutionally required 25% votes in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) is subversive, an affront to Democratic Order and assault on the corporate existence of the nation.

He said, “It is alarming and disturbing that the APC externalized to the public, their final written address in which they also threatened national peace if the Court upholds the clear provisions of Section 134 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) with regard to the mandatory and statutory requirements for which a Candidate in a Presidential election can be declared winner.

“The threats, either through Counsel or officials of the APC is calculated to intimidate and harass the Judiciary and indeed Nigerians.

“The PDP holds that the clear intent of the APC is to blackmail the Court and emasculate the independence of the judiciary to discharge its duties in accordance with the dictates of the law. This action is ostensibly to set the stage to orchestrate violent crisis in various parts of the country with the intention to further blackmail the PEPC.

“We ask, why is the APC externalizing their final written address to the public? Is the APC being pre-emptive and now seeks to heighten tension, subvert the judicial process and trigger anarchy, having realized the weakness of their case before the PEPC?”

The PDP, while cautioning that Nigeria is a country of Rule of Law, said the  statutory requirements for a winner in a Presidential election as provided by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) and the Electoral Act, 2022 are clear and unambiguous.  

“The APC must therefore respect the provisions of the law and allow the judiciary to discharge its duties independently, without threats, intimidation and coercion.

“Contrary to the doomsday claims of the APC and its lawyers, upholding the provisions of the Constitution and the laws at this point will rather promote peace and stability in the polity, deepen our democracy and engender confidence in the Institution of the Judiciary.”

The PDP further called on Nigerians to remain calm, alert and hopeful in the ability of the Judiciary to dispense justice accordingly.


… Your Sack Won’t Lead To Anarchy, LP Replies Tinubu

The Labour Party has said there won’t be anarchy in the country should the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC) sack President Bola Tinubu from office. 

The opposition party stated this while reacting to the address by Tinubu’s lawyer at PEPC wherein he warned that interpreting the law as provided for in the constitution on the 25% of lawful votes cast in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, could “lead to absurdity, chaos, anarchy and alteration of the very intention of the legislature.”

The national publicity secretary of Labour Party, Obiora Ifoh, said the opposition is worried that the statement which formed part of his submissions and was contained in his final written address against the Labour Party’s petition pending at the PREPEC, and meant to be in the exclusive custody of the court was leaked to the media. 

“We still do not know the reason behind this act of desperation, even when the matter is still pending in court. We will however be careful not to term the action as “Sub-judice”.

“Having said that, the Labour Party thinks that the statement was unnecessary since the matter is already before the court, and going ahead to pontificate on it could be construed as interference in the duties and responsibilities of the judiciary. “

Noting that there are no sentiments when it comes to matters of law, Ifoh added that once the law has stipulated how a matter must be carried out, it must follow that pattern. 

“If the law has stated the requirement that a presidential candidate must meet before he can be declared, there is no shortcut to it. Therefore, if the constitution which is the ground norm of the law in Nigeria has stated clearly that you must score at least 25 percent in FCT before the president can be declared, anything short of that can not remedy it.”

The party spokesman cautioned APC to desist from pressuring the judiciary to see the developments through its lense.

“We insist that no amount of threat from the APC on the judges in the tribunal can change the processes and requirements that the law has put in place. It must be followed and that is the position of the Labour Party. 

“We recall very clearly a mild but stern threat during the ‘Democracy Day’ Speech made by the APC-led administration where it stated emphatically that “It has become imperative to state here that the unnecessary illegal orders used to truncate or abridge democracy will no longer be tolerated.” We noted then that the warning appeared threatening enough as it sounded more totalitarian but today we are confronted with a sterner approach to whipping the judiciary into a pathway, a development if allowed unchallenged will spell doom for the nation.

“We see in that statement a call on the armies of the APC to awaken to their sworn vow to return to the trenches just the way they unleashed terror on our supporters during the February election. The same thugs that perpetrated “absurdity, chaos, and anarchy” and who were used to alter the will of Nigerians are still very present and willing to do the will of their paymasters. Let me assure the APC and their leaders that if there were no “absurdity, chaos, and anarchy” when they forced their way into power, Nigeria will still witness peace when they are eventually evicted from power,” the statement added. 

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