The Presidential Election Petitions Court (PEPC), on Wednesday afternoon, held that the Labour Pary (LP) and its presidential candidate, Peter Obi, failed to adequately detail their allegations of corrupt practices, vote suppression, fictitious results, and other irregularities in their petition challenging the victory of President Bola Tinubu in the February 25 presidential election.
A member of panel of Justices of the Court, Justice Abba Bello Mohammed, who read the ruling on preliminary objections filed by the respondents, said the LP made generic allegations of irregularities, suppression of votes and corrupt practices to rob them of their votes, especially in Rivers, Benue, Lagos, Taraba, Imo and Osun States but failed to specify the affected polling units.
Justice Mohammed further held that LP also failed to prove the allegations of rigging and overvoting against the All Progressives Congress (APC) and their actual reduced votes.
According to him, Obi’s petition only alleged that there were widespread irregularities without giving the particulars and the polling units. He added that, in a presidential election held in 176,866 polling units in 774 Local Government Areas, it would be improper not to specify where there were irregularities.
Justice Mohammed therefore said the petitioners only made generic allegations.
“Pleading must set out material facts and particulars. In the instant petition, there was no effort to prove specific allegations, particulars of complaints,” said the Tribunal.
“The law is clear that where someone alleges irregularities in a particular polling unit, such person must prove the particular irregularities in that polling unit before that petition can succeed,” the Tribunal added.
“It was only in one instance that figures were given of alleged suppressed votes and we all know that elections are about figures.
“LP alleged that INEC reduced their scores and added it to APC votes but failed to supply particulars of what they actually scored before the said reductions, neither did they supply the polling units where it happened,” he further stated.
He said the documents promised by the petitioners were not attached to the petition and served on the respondents.