Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
The National and State Assembly Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Makurdi has thrown out the application for additional witness statement brought before it by the senatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief Steven Lawani, challenging the election of Abba Moro in the 2019 election.
The Tribunal headed by Justice A A Adeleye had earlier rejected Lawani’s application for the inclusion of additional witnesses in the petition after the expiration of the mandatory 21 days provided for such amendments.
In another ruling of Monday, July 8, Justice Adeleye said the Tribunal would no longer entertain applications after the expiration of the 21 days provided by law as, according to him, such application is aimed at delaying the dispensation of justice in the petition which was time bound.
Commenting on the ruling, counsel to the second respondent (Peoples Democratic Party), Barr. Clement Mue, said a similar application which was thrown out by the Tribunal had earlier been dismissed by the Court ofAppeal with cost attached.
Mue, while hailing the Tribunal’s ruling, noted that Lawani’s petition appears to be losing a lot of weight because the issues the petitioner wanted to bring in through the backdoor have all been rejected.
The PDP counsel commended the Tribunal which, according to him, has been fair and firm in its dealings with all the parties in the case, disclosing further that hearing on the substantive petition would commence on July 15.