The All Progressives Congress (APC), on Tuesday, in Abuja, assembled a team of highly qualified and experienced lawyers to represent it at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
According to a statement by Ahmad El-Marzuq, APC National Legal Adviser, the team comprised legal luminaries with vast experience in election petition matters, constitutional law and litigation.
He said the legal team, consisting of 13 Senior Advocates of Nigeria, was led by Prince Lateef Fagbemi, a renowned lawyer.
El-Marzuq said Fagbemi had successfully handled various high-profile election matters and other landmark cases.
He expressed confidence that the legal team possesses the requisite expertise and experience to ensure a successful outcome for the APC in the Presidential Election Petition matters.
The APC National Legal Adviser urged the party’s members to support the team in its effort to defend the will and mandate of the people at the February 25 presidential election.
He also called on all parties involved to conduct themselves with the utmost professionalism and respect for the rule of law throughout the legal process.
The legal team includes Lateef Fagbemi (Lead Counsel); Ahmad El-Marzuq (Life Bencher); Sam Ologunorisa;Rotimi Oguneso; Olabisi Syebo; Gbotega Oyewole; Muritala Abdulrasheed; Aliyu Saiki; Tajudeen Oladoja; Pius Akubo; Oluseye Opasanya; Suraju Saida and Kazeem Adeniyi.
INEC had on Wednesday, March 1, 2023, declared Tinubu of the APC, winner of the February presidential election.
The chief collation officer of the election who doubled as Chairman of the INEC, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, declared that Tinubu polled 8,794,726 votes to beat Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who got 6,984,520, and Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP) who secured 6,101,533 votes.
The PDP and LP had separately rejected the declaration of Tinubu, as President-elect by the electoral umpire.
Atiku and Obi had separately approached the court with two different ex-parte motions filed at the Presidential Election Court (PEC) secretariat on March 1 and March 2, 2023, respectively.
On Friday, the court granted the separate ex-parte application filed by Atiku and Obi seeking permission to inspect the electoral materials for the Presidential election.
At its protest to the National headquarters of INEC, in Abuja on Monday, the PDP had demanded that INEC should immediately withdraw the Certificate of Return (CoR) issued to the former Lagos State governor and cancel the poll in line deference to Section 65 of the Electoral Act 2022.
It insisted that the electoral body, in declaring the APC flag-bearer as winner of contest, acted contrary to provisions of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), Electoral Act 2022 and guidelines and regulations for conduct of the 2023 presidential election.
The party also claimed that its standard-bearer, Atiku Abubakar, “clearly won the February 25, 2023 presidential election, having evidently scored the majority of lawful votes cast by Nigerians at the polling units.”
Both PDP and Labour claimed that the exercise was marred by “deliberate malpractices, including the non-use of Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) and INEC’s refusal/failure to transmit directly results from polling units to its server/website in flagrant violation of Section 60 (4)(b) of the Electoral Act 2022″.
“This violation of the Electoral Act by INEC, as attested to by political parties, voters, Nigerians of all walks of life, as well as local and International observers, paved way for alteration, falsification, switching of results and allocation of figures in favour of the APC”, th PDP said in a statement.