James Carter
Wed, Sep 6, 2023 9:01 AM

Nigeria's Presidential Election Tribunal to Rule on Tinubu's Victory

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Nigeria's Presidential Election Tribunal to Rule on Tinubu's Victory
The Nigerian presidential election tribunal is set to deliver its ruling on the validity of Bola Tinubu's victory in February's disputed vote. The tribunal will decide whether the election should be invalidated due to alleged irregularities. If the ruling upholds Tinubu's win, his rivals can make a final appeal at the Supreme Court. Tinubu faces challenges in addressing Nigeria's pressing problems, including anemic growth, high unemployment, inflation, and insecurity, while implementing economic reforms.

ABUJA (Reuters) - Nigeria's presidential election tribunal is due to rule on Wednesday on whether Bola Tinubu should stay as president after two rivals challenged his victory in February's disputed vote.

There have been numerous legal challenges to the outcome of previous Nigerian presidential elections but none have succeeded. Most political observers expect the tribunal to uphold Tinubu's win.

Atiku Abubakar of the People's Democratic Party and Labour Party's Peter Obi asked the court to invalidate the election, alleging irregularities and accused the electoral body of breaching the law by failing to use electronic machines to upload polling station results, among other criticisms.

The tribunal, which will deliver its ruling in the capital Abuja, has the power to cancel an election and order a fresh one, among other remedies.

If it upholds Tinubu's win, Atiku and Obi can still make a final appeal at the country's Supreme Court, the highest court in Nigeria. An appeal should be concluded within 60 days from the date of the tribunal judgment.

Ahead of the ruling, the military set up check-points on major roads into Abuja, randomly searching commuters and vehicles.

Tinubu, who is in India ahead of a G20 Summit, has defended his victory and says he is focused on reviving the economy. He has implemented reforms that include removing a popular but costly petrol subsidy and ending currency controls.

But getting Nigerians to stomach the painful reforms has been hard and the 71-year-old veteran faces opposition from labor unions, who started a two-day strike on Tuesday ahead of an indefinite strike from Sept. 21.

Anaemic growth, high unemployment, the highest inflation rate in two decades, record debt, massive oil theft that has hit government revenues, and widespread insecurity are among the issues that Tinubu inherited from predecessor Muhammadu Buhari.

Fixing these pressing problems requires public support, but Tinubu garnered 8.79 million votes, the fewest won by a Nigerian president since the country returned to democracy in 1999, limiting the goodwill towards him.

The ruling of the presidential election tribunal will have significant implications for Nigeria's political landscape. Whether Tinubu's victory is upheld or invalidated, it will shape the country's path forward.

Should the tribunal uphold Tinubu's win, it will solidify his position as the president and provide some level of legitimacy to his government. However, challenges lie ahead for Tinubu as he grapples with Nigeria's pressing issues.

The Nigerian economy has been struggling, with anaemic growth, high unemployment, and the highest inflation rate in two decades. Tinubu's reforms aimed at reviving the economy, such as the removal of the fuel subsidy and ending currency controls, have faced backlash.

One of the major obstacles Tinubu faces is gaining public support for these painful reforms. The low number of votes received in the election reflects a lack of widespread trust and goodwill towards him.

Moreover, Tinubu's government is confronting significant challenges in addressing the country's security concerns. Nigeria has been plagued by widespread insecurity, including insurgencies, armed conflicts, and rampant crime.

During his predecessor's tenure, oil theft reached alarming levels, severely impacting government revenues. Tinubu will need to develop effective strategies to tackle these issues and restore stability.

Additionally, labour unions pose a significant challenge to Tinubu's reform agenda. The recent strikes and threats of indefinite strikes indicate the resistance he faces from organized labour.

If the ruling upholds Tinubu's victory, it will be vital for him to prioritize dialogue and engagement with labour unions to address their concerns effectively while implementing necessary reforms for the country's economic recovery.

Regardless of the tribunal's ruling, Tinubu's next steps will require careful navigation to restore public trust, promote inclusive policies, and effectively address Nigeria's pressing problems.

Source of content: OOO News 2023-09-06 News

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