Sarah Smith
Thu, Sep 7, 2023 2:10 PM

Nigerian Court Upholds President Tinubu's Election Victory, Opposition Plans Appeal

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Nigerian Court Upholds President Tinubu's Election Victory, Opposition Plans Appeal
Nigeria's appeals court has dismissed the opposition's challenges to overturn President Bola Ahmed Tinubu's election victory. In a highly contested ballot, Tinubu secured the presidency after winning 37 percent of the vote. The opposition parties plan to take the case to the Supreme Court. Despite criticism from opposition parties, Tinubu welcomed the ruling and called for unity among parties.

Abuja - The Nigerian appeals court has dismissed the opposition's challenges to overturn President Bola Ahmed Tinubu's February election victory. After a highly contested ballot, Tinubu secured the presidency by winning 37 percent of the vote, beating the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Atiku Abubakar, and Labour Party's Peter Obi.

The opposition, consisting of two main parties, had filed petitions alleging fraud, lawbreaking by electoral authorities, and Tinubu's ineligibility to run for office. However, the appeals judges rejected these claims.

Following the court's ruling, the opposition plans to take the case to the Supreme Court, which has never overturned a Nigerian presidential election since the country's return to democracy in 1999.

The long-awaited judgment was broadcasted live on television for over nine hours. Legal teams gathered in the courtroom, where judges meticulously examined the technical details presented in the case.

President Tinubu expressed gratitude for the ruling and thanked Nigerians for their trust. His spokesman issued a statement emphasizing Tinubu's commitment to meeting and exceeding the expectations of the populace.

However, the opposition parties criticized the ruling, claiming that the Nigerian people were witnesses to electoral robbery. The Labour Party, in a statement issued on X, formerly Twitter, stated their determination to ensure that democracy prevails.

Tinubu assumed office in May and wasted no time introducing economic reforms to revitalize Africa's largest economy. As he attends the G20 summit in India, his primary focus is to attract foreign investment.

An appeal to the Supreme Court seems to be the next step for the opposition parties. Veronica Pana Igube, an analyst at SBM Intelligence, noted that previous presidential election tribunals in Nigeria have all come to a conclusion at the Supreme Court.

The 2023 election witnessed a historic level of competition, mainly due to the emergence of a major third-party candidate, Peter Obi. This challenged the dominance of Tinubu's All Progressives Congress (APC) party and the PDP.

Concerns about transparency led the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to introduce biometric technology and IReV, a central database for real-time result uploading. While INEC acknowledged certain glitches, it maintained that the vote was free and fair. Critics, however, argued that these delays and technical issues provided opportunities for vote manipulation.

In separate lawsuits, the PDP and Labour Party called for the nullification of the results and demanded that their candidates be declared winners or a rerun be ordered. The PDP's Abubakar even referred to the vote as a "rape of democracy."

This court ruling arrives at a challenging time for Nigeria, as citizens grapple with rising living costs following the end of a fuel subsidy program and the naira currency's devaluation. The government asserts that these policies are necessary for economic revival, while also providing financial aid to state governments to mitigate the impact.

Tinubu's administration is also confronting significant security challenges, including the ongoing fight against jihadists in the northeast, intercommunal clashes, and kidnapping gangs operating across various regions.

Source of content: OOO News 2023-09-07 News

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