The Kaduna State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal has adjourned to tomorrow, June 17th, hearing in the petition filed by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) against the re-election of Governor Nasir el-Rufai.
The adjournment was to allow respondents in the petition study and verify the documents presented as evidence by the practitioners.
Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Ibrahim Bako, said at the resumed hearing of the petition that the three respondents, El-Rufa’i, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) were not privy to the documents brought before the tribunal by the petitioners.
According to him, the respondents would need time to study the documents assembled by the petitioners to prepare their responses.
Documents presented by the petitioners include Certified True Copies (CTC) of INEC result sheets and voters’ registers used during the March 9 polls.
Bako said the tribunal, on the adjourned date, will admit those petitioners’ documents certified by the three respondents as evidence, while those they disagreed on would be presented for argument by counsel to the parties.
Counsel to the PDP, Elisha Kurah (SAN), told newsmen shortly after the adjournment that the party had assembled 685 witnesses to testify within the two weeks given by the tribunal.
Kurah said the petitioners had all the needed documentary evidence and witnesses to prove their case before the tribunal.
“And by the time the votes in the areas affected by violence, rigging and other irregularities are removed, the PDP and its candidate, Isah Ashiru, would have majority votes in the March 9 poll,” he claimed.
The PDP and its governorship candidate are challenging the return of Gov. El-Rufa’i of the APC as declared by INEC.
The petitioners alleged that the March 9 governorship poll was characterised by irregularities, massive rigging and violence in some parts of the state.