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PEPT: AIT broadcaster, Ijeoma Osamor testifies for Peter Obi in suit against INEC, Tinubu 

Ms Ijeoma Osamor, Broadcast Journalist with DAAR Communications Plc on Friday testified in the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC).


Osamor, who anchors a programme in the Africa Independent Television (AIT) “Democracy Today” was subpoenaed as ‘7th witness (PW 7) for Mr Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP) .


Obi and LP are petitioners in the petition marked CA/PEPC/03/2023 challenging the election which brought president Bola Tinubu into power


Respondents are Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) president Bola Tinubu and Vice president Kashim Shettima and All Progressives Congress (APC).


Osamor when being cross examined by APC counsel, Abiodun Owonikoko, SAN, said INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu said the results of the Feb. 25 presidential election would be transmitted live.


One of the grounds raised by the petitioners in support of their prayers to invalidate the return of the president, Bola Tinubu was that Yakubu reneged on his promise to upload the results sent to the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System to the INEC Results Viewing portal in real-time.


However, video evidence tendered before the PEPC by the petitioners bordered around clips showing the INEC chairman at different times assuring Nigerians of the use of technology in the presidential election.


The court, again admitted in evidence another flash drive and played it in the open court a clip of Mahmoud delivering a speech emphasizing the deployment of BVAS and IReV for the elections.


When asked by Owonikoko if she was aware that a few days before the election, Yakubu in a press statement said the results will no longer be uploaded real-time.


She her news organisation is focused on live coverage of events and programmes.


Owonikoko also, raised the issue and cited a publication by The Tribune on Feb. 23 that election results would no longer be transmitted in real-time.


Osamor said the Tribune publication could have been based on an interview with the reporter.


The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Tribune on Feb 23 published a story with the headline ‘ we won’t transmit raw figures of election results, INEC chairman.


According to Tribune, Yakubu said that at a meeting with the leaders of the international election observers who visited him at the commission.


However, the reporter insisted that while covering the beat, she was present during the said period at all press briefings and at the collation centre , particularly on the said day.


She said that Yakubu did not make such statement.


Meanwhile, the five-member panel led by Justice Haruna Tsammani adjourned until Monday for the cross examination of the witness and further hearing of the petition.


(National Accord)


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