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Presidential Election: INEC Credited Invalid Votes To Buhari – Atiku Tells Tribunal

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In Details : ABUJA – The Presidential candidate of the Peoples
Democratic Party, PDP, Atiku Abubakar, has alleged that the Independent
National Electoral Commission, INEC, had at various stages of the
February 23 presidential election, unlawful allocated votes to President
Muhammadu Buhari

Atiku who made the allegation in the petition
he lodged before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal sitting in
Abuja, said he would adduce oral and documentary evidence to show that
results of the election as announced by INEC, especially the votes
credited to President Buhari, did not represent the lawful valid votes
cast.

He alleged that in some states, INEC, deducted lawful votes
that accrued to him, in its bid to ensure that Buhari was returned back
to office. Both Atiku and the PDP said they would call evidence of
statisticians, forensic examiners and finger-print experts at the
hearing of the petition to establish that the scores credited to Buhari
were not the product of actual votes validly cast at the polling units.
“The Petitioners plead and shall rely on electronic video recordings,
newspaper reports, photographs and photographic images of several
infractions of the electoral process by the Respondents”, they added.
Specifically, the petitioners serialised results that were recorded from
each state of the federation in order to prove that the alleged
fraudulent allocation of votes to Buhari and the All Progressives
Congress, APC, took place at the polling units, the ward collating
centres, local government collating centres and the State collating
centres. Atiku contended that proper collation and summation of the
presidential election results would show that contrary to what INEC
declared, he garnered a total of 18,356,732 votes, ahead of Buhari who
he said got a total of 16,741,430 votes. “The Petitioners shall rely on
the evidence of Statisticians, Forensic Examiners and other Experts,
detailing the data analysis on the votes at all levels of collation,
from the polling units to the final return”, he added. “The Petitioners
state that Smart Card Readers deployed by the 1st Respondent, in
addition to accreditation, equally transmitted electronically the
results of voting from polling units directly to the server of the 1st
Respondent. The Presiding Officers of the 1st Respondent directly
inputted the results from the polling units at the end of voting and
transmitted directly to the server, in addition to manually taking the
Form EC8As to the Wards for collation. The 1st Respondent is hereby
given notice to produce the records of results from each polling unit
uploaded and transmitted electronically by officials of the 1st
Respondent through smart card readers to the 1st Respondent’s Servers.

The
Petitioners plead and rely on the 1st Respondent’s Manual Technologies
2019, and notice is hereby given to the 1st Respondent to produce same
at the trial. The 1st Respondent’s agents at the polling units used the
Smart Card Reader for electronic collation and transmission of results.
The Petitioners plead and shall rely on and play at the trial, the video
demonstration by the 1st Respondent of the deployment of Smart Card
Reader for authentication of accreditation and for transmission of data.
“The Petitioners hereby plead and rely upon the extract of data as
contained on the 1st Respondent’s servers as at 25th February 2019,
notice to produce whereof is hereby given to the 1st Respondent. The
Petitioners also will rely on the data on the 1st Respondent’s central
server between 25th February 2019 and 8th March 2019 and hereby also
give notice to produce same before this Honourable Court. “The
Petitioners hereby plead the electronic data on the servers of the 1st
Respondent and shall at the trial give evidence of the source of the
data analysis and data material, including the website: www.factsdontlieng.com.
“The 1st Respondent had on the day of election published the total
number of registered voters in the entire Country as 84,004,084.
Subsequently, the same 1st Respondent published a different figure of
82,344,107 as registered voters, leading to an unexplained difference of
1,659,977 registered voters. The 1st Respondent equally published the
number of permanent voter’s cards (PVC) collected for the purpose of the
presidential election as 72,775,502. “The Petitioners state that
whereas the actual number of voters accredited at the election was
35,098,162, the 1st Respondent wrongly suppressed and/or reduced the
number of accredited voters to 29,394,209 to the detriment of the
Petitioners. “The 1st Respondent had by its Regulations and Guidelines
for the Conduct of Elections, 2019 made pursuant to the Electoral Act,
2010 (as amended) provided for the mandatory use of card readers for the
said election. The 1st Respondent by its press release on smart card
readers issued in February 2019 and signed by its National Commissioner,
Barrister Festus Okoye, emphasised and reiterated that “The use of the
Smart Card Reader is NOT ONLY MANDATORY but its deliberate non-use
attracts the sanction of possible prosecution of erring officials in
accordance with the INEC Regulations and Guidelines for the conduct of
elections. “This is in addition to the voiding of any result emanating
from such units or areas as was done in the Presidential and National
Assembly elections of February 23, 2019.” By this stated position of the
1st Respondent, all accreditation not done by smart card reader in the
presidential election was and remain void. “The Petitioners state and
contend that the 2nd Respondent was not duly elected by majority of
lawful votes cast at the election; and that from the data on each State
of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, in the 1st
Respondent’s server, the 1st Petitioner, as opposed to the 2nd
Respondent, scored majority of lawful votes cast at the election.
“Wherefore, the Petitioners pray jointly and severally against the
Respondents as follows:- “That it may be determined that the 2nd
Respondent (Buhari) was not duly elected by a majority of lawful votes
cast in the said election and therefore the declaration and return of
the 2nd Respondent by the 1st Respondent as the President of Nigeria is
unlawful, undue, null, void and of no effect. “That it may be determined
that the 1st Petitioner (Atiku) was duly and validly elected and ought
to be returned as President of Nigeria, having polled the highest number
of lawful votes cast at the election to the office of the President of
Nigeria held on 23rd February 2019 and having satisfied the
constitutional requirements for the said election.

An order
directing the 1st Respondent to issue Certificate of Return to the 1st
Petitioner as the duly elected President of Nigeria. “That it may be
determined that the 2nd Respondent was at the time of the election not
qualified to contest the said election. “That it may be determined that
the 2nd Respondent submitted to the Commission affidavit containing
false information of a fundamental nature in aid of his qualification
for the said election”. In the alternative, he prayed: “That the
election to the office of the President of Nigeria held on 23rd February
2019 be nullified and a fresh election ordered”

Source:- Vanguardngr

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