Tribunal adjourns for judgment, counsels adopt final addresses
From Umar Danladi Ado, Sokoto
The National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Sokoto yesterday adjourned to an undisclosed date for judgement in the petition filed by the defeated candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ahmad Muhammad Maccido, against the winner of the February 23, 2019, Sokoto North Senatorial District polls, Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko.
The Chairman of the Tribunal, Justice Peter Akhimie Akhihiero, said while adjourning the case, “the matter has been adjourned for judgment. The date will be communicated in due course.”
The counsel for the petitioners and respondents had earlier adopted all their final written addresses.
The Lead Counsel of the first respondent, Dr. Hassan Liman, SAN, said, “in accordance with the Rules of the Court and the Electoral Act, the first respondent has filed his written addresses dated 17/7/2019.
“We have also filed a reply to the petitioners’ written address on 1/8/2019. We hereby adopt the said two addresses as our final argument in this petition.
“We are urging the court to dismiss and strike out the petition for being Statute -Barred as it was filed out of time, as well as lacking in merit.”
Lead Counsel for the second respondent, Chief Jacob Ochidi, also stated that the second respondent had filed his final written address on 2/7/2019.
Ochidi explained, “I hereby adopt the written address as the argument of the second respondent in this petition.
“I am also urging the Tribunal to strike out the petition for being Statute-Barred, resolving all the issues of the second respondent.
“To dismiss same petition for lacking in merit and award substantial cost in favour of the second respondent, against the petitioners,” he added.
Similarly, Lead Counsel for the third respondent, Barrister Henry Eni-Otu, told the Court that his client had filed his final written address on 18/7/2019.
He averred: “I want to adopt it as the argument of the third and urged the court to strike out the petition for being Statute-Barred.
“I am also praying the court to dismiss the petition in its entirety for being unmeritorious and speculative,” he said.
The Lead Counsel of the Petitioners, Dr. Ibrahim Abdullahi said the petitioners had filed their written address on 25/7/2019.
“We respectively adopt the same written address, making particular reliance on legal arguments.
“I am also urging the court to resolve all the issues against the respondents, to hold that the petition is not Statute-Barred and to grant the reliefs of the petitioners,” he advanced.
Responding, Dr Hassan Liman , SAN, commended the Chairman and members of the Tribunal for being diligent and working assiduously to ensure smooth proceedings.