Obi’s petition: Tinubu, Shettima, APC close defence
The President, Bola Tinubu; the Vice President, Kassim Shettima, and the All Progressives Congress have closed their defence in the joint petition filed by the Labour Party and its candidate, Peter Obi.
The trio are co-respondents in the petition by the LP and Obi challenging their victory in the February 25 presidential election.
The respondents through their team of lawyers led by Wole Olanikpekun (SAN) (for Tinubu and Shettima) and Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, (for the APC) closed their defence after tendering several documents and calling a witness to testify in aid of their counter-arguments against the issues raised by the petitioners.
Despite the objections by the petitioners, the five-man panel of the court presided over by Haruna Tsammani admitted the documents as evidence and marked them as exhibits.
Senator Bamidele testifies
The Senate Majority Leader, Senator Micheal Bamidele, testified during Wednesday’s proceeding.
During the proceedings, the president called Bamidele as a witness. The lawmaker’s testimony was taken by the court.
Bamidele maintained that the $460,000 forfeiture order against the President by an American court was in respect of a civil matter that cannot take the place of criminal charges.
Other admitted documents
Other documents tendered and admitted during Wednesday’s proceedings include a letter from the Nigeria Police to the United States Embassy, dated February 3, 2003; a letter from the United States Embassy to the Nigeria Police, dated February 4, 2003; and US Visas and immigration documents between 2011 and 2021.
Atiku’s petition: Tinubu, Shettima, APC close defence
Meanwhile, Tinubu, Shettima and the ruling party closed their defence in the joint petition by the Peoples Democratic Party and its candidate, Atiku Abubakar.
The PDP and Atiku are also challenging the outcome of the February 25 election won by Tinubu.
During the resumed hearing in their defence on Wednesday evening, the respondents in the petition proceeded to close their case after tendering several documents and calling one witness to testify in the matter.
During the proceedings, the president again called Bamidele as their sole witness.
Under cross-examination by counsel for the APC, Fagbemi, SAN, the witness affirmed that the president was not charged with any criminal offence by any American court.
This was about the widely circulated court affidavit from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division on civil forfeiture proceedings against Tinubu concerning $460,000.
However, the witness affirmed that “there can’t be a conviction without a charge, arraignment and defence.”
He said the president has a clean bill of health as far as criminal charges in the USA are concerned.
He further affirmed the statement by the senior advocate that the president is a citizen of Nigeria by birth.