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Political forces mounting pressure on two presidential tribunal justices to resign — Group raises the alarm

A non-governmental organisation, Face Of Waziri-Nigeria (FOWN), said strong indications have emerged of frantic effort to frustrate at least two of the Justices at Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT), to resign in order to make mess of the judicial panel.


The group’s Director General, Comrade Bukky Adeniyi, stated this in a statement issued in Lagos, on Thursday, reports Vanguard.


Adeniyi maintained that “given the existing legal proviso which necessitates a replacement and retrieval in case the Justices resign and consequently translates to buying time beyond that stipulated by the Supreme Court is a ploy to make the case statute barred and of no effect.”


FOWN allegedly stated “there is surreptitious move by President Bola Tinubu to make the Justices resign which is targeted at ensuring the time frame of 180 days elapses before the case is concluded by the panel.”


According to Adeniyi, “The Justice has not resigned at the moment but we have it on good authority that Mr. Tinubu and his team are seriously working hard to threaten and frustrate one or two of them to resign so that the panel will be bereft of jurisdiction at this stage.


“This will lead to replacement and retrieval de novo. In which case, it will be statute barred once outside the 180 days stipulated by the constitution and attendant of which ends the matter, because Supreme Court cannot extend time.


“At the moment Tinubu is pressuring the tribunal. He wants two judges to withdraw or resign from the panel.


“A particular Governor formerly with the PDP but now in APC sequel to Tinubu’s blessing from South-South is delegated to use document of money exchange between the government of that state and one or two of the justices in the past for judgment favour then, as a proof to harass and intimidate the justices to shift the judgment of the tribunal in their favour.


The group, however raised some poser on the matter: “How do you explain if at all such money exchange occurred in the past, to now want to use such to blackmail the Justice?


“Did the Justice or justices demand for money the governor gave then or was given as thank you? In whatever case, the tribunal matter is different from whatever transaction they had together in the past.


“He faulted the recent move by the counsel to the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar to subpoena the institution on the need to ascertain authenticity of documents relating to his attendance at Chicago State University.


“Abubakar had in a petition dated July 11, 2023, by and through his attorneys, requested the court to “issue subpoena commanding a corporate representative of Resident Chicago State University (Respondent) to appear for deposition upon oral examination of the topics set forth in Exhibit A attached hereto at the offices of Dechert LLP at 35 West Wacker Drive, Suite 3400, Chicago, Illinois 60601 on July 21, 2023 at 9.00am.”


The respondent Is expected among other things to, “testify and give evidences and in support thereof states as follows: “That non-party Bola Ahmed Tinubu is currently the President of Nigeria and is facing various court proceedings concerning his election and the authenticity of documents relating to his attendance at Chicago State University; “That Mr. Tinubu had previously asserted that he attended various educational institutions located in the Chicago area, including but not limited to Chicago State University; “To test the truth and veracity of Mr. Tinubu’s assertions, Petitioner must depose a corporate representative of Respondent Chicago State University (Respondent) regarding educational record or lack thereof, from respondent,” among others.


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