The Obi-Datti Campaign suggests President Bola Tinubu won’t participate in a rerun election, pointing to strong evidence presented at the Presidential Election Petition Court in Abuja.
President Tinubu recently called on the court’s justices to leave out the LP’s candidate, Peter Obi, in any rerun presidential election, stating only he and the PDP’s Atiku Abubakar are eligible.
Lawyers representing Tinubu and the All Progressives Congress (APC) have urged the court to bar Obi from a rerun, given he placed third in the initial race.
However, the LP branded Tinubu’s lawyers’ stance as an effort to impose his view on the justices. The campaign believes that based on evidence, Tinubu wouldn’t be a contender in a rerun.
The spokesperson and Head of Media of the organisation, Diran Onifade, in an interview with ThisDay, opined that Tinubu’s moves, especially the push to exclude Obi and his challenges to the election outcome in Kano signalled his loss of votes in states like Rivers and Benue.
He said, “If there will be a second election, it will be between the top two. Tinubu will not be among the top two because all the issues we raised are enough to disqualify him. The certificate forgery, the drug trafficking forfeiture, the invalid nomination of his vice, etc. All those things would have disqualified him in the first place.
“So, he is not going to be on the ballot. All these things that his lawyers are doing are just to make him comfortable. They have misled him and are also trying to mislead and hoodwink the justices. The justices are not foolish.
“They are claiming that the constitution says that even if it’s true that he has a case of forfeiture, after 10 years, you have been cleared. But that is not true. They are just being clever by half. The section of the constitution they are talking about has so many subsections and only one of them has the 10-year moratorium and it doesn’t cover him.”
Speaking on the claim that Obi came third, Onifade said, “So, if there is going to be another election, their man would have been disqualified.
“We talked about the figure we put together from Rivers State and Benue State. He didn’t even address those at all. When you remove what they stole in Rivers and Benue states and you add to Obi’s, their own figures would have gone down and Obi won’t be in the third position again.”
When questioned if the figures in Rivers and Benue states would be enough to displace either Tinubu or Atiku, he said the issue was still subjudice, adding however, that for the APC and Tinubu to come from behind to challenge the results in Kano in the last minute, while on the other hand appealing to exclude Obi from a possible rerun, left a lot to be desired.
He noted, “We can’t prejudge the tribunal. But let’s say for the sake of your question, if you remove one million from eight million, it will go down to seven million. And when you add that one million to six million, that will amount to seven million. We have a professor who did all the calculations. It’s a pity that we didn’t have the time to carry out the calculations nationwide. They know it’s damaging to them.
“If not, how come that a state like Kano that we are not even contesting with them, was brought to the tribunal to challenge that votes were stolen from them in Kano?” Onifade queried.”
He explained that “their (APC) calculation is that by the time what they stole from Rivers and Benue states are deducted, their votes would have gone down and if the tribunal grants them what they claimed they lost in Kano, it might make up for what is deducted from them.
“Even those of us who are laymen, know that their lawyers are playing mind games because it’s one thing they would say in the evidence they have tendered and it’s another that their witnesses will say under oath.
“For instance, under oath, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele admitted that their man forfeited money and it’s about narcotics trafficking. He admitted that under oath. The same forfeiture they have been going about saying that it’s a civil case. Then again, the INEC witness even though he tendered a document that the uploading on IReV was not part of the mandatory process, in his testimony before the justices, changed it and said the process included uploading through the IReV.
“The court document that they tendered, they said the case was about narcotics trafficking. That’s the exact words in that document. And then the certificate issue. The one he presented to INEC was not issued by the university. That’s a forgery.”