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Presidential Poll: Tribunal overrules Buhari, INEC, admits video evidence

By Ikechukwu Nnochiri

ABUJA- The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja, on Monday, admitted in evidence, video recordings that allegedly depicted how the February 23 presidential election was manipulated in favour of President Muhammadu Buhari.

Atiku and Buhari, Presidential Poll Tribunal
Atiku and Buhari

The Justice Mohammed Garba-led five-member panel tribunal admitted the 48 Video Compact Disc, VCDs, into evidence, after it dismissed objections that were raised by President Buhari, the All Progressives Congress, APC, and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, who are respondents to the petition that was lodged by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and its candidate, Atiku Abubakar

Justice Garba held that all the parties had agreed during the pre-hearing stage of the petition to only indicate their objection to any evidence sought to be tendered, and reserve their reasons for the written address.

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The tribunal held that all the parties were bound by the agreement and could not renege or deliberately deviate from any of the terms.

Justice Garba noted that in the pre-hearing agreement, no particular or specific document was excluded from being tendered from the Bar.

“The document now tendered from the Bar is clearly within the terms of agreement adopted by parties”.

Consequently, the tribunal admitted the video evidence and marked them as exhibits P-36 to P-83.

It also admitted Certificate of Compliance with respect to the videos as exhibit P-37.

The respondents had opposed the admissibility of the exhibts they said was not frontloaded by the petitioners.

They contended that the exhibits were in breach of Paragraph 4(6c) and 41(2) of the 1st Schedule to the Electoral Act.

Meanwhile, the petitioners, through their lawyer, Chief Chris Uche, SAN, applied for the videos to be played.

A big screen was earlier mounted inside the court to enable the Justices to watch the videos.

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