The Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Makurdi on Tuesday adjourned the case between the All Progressives Congress (APC)’s gubernatorial candidate, Barrister Emmanuel Jime and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s Governor Samuel Ortom to Friday, May 31, 2019 for continuation of pre-hearing.
Jime had on April 12, 2019, filed a petition before the tribunal to challenge the return of the respondent, Ortom as winner of the 2019 governorship election in the state as announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Also joined in the petition are INEC as first respondent and PDP as the third respondent.
At the sitting on Tuesday, the Chairman of the Panel, Justice Adebola Olusiyi, reminded counsels and parties, that there are 180 days within which the petition filed on April 12 will be heard and determined as he called for all hands to be on deck to ensure that the petition is dispensed within the period.
“There must be no waste of time whatsoever with frivolities. There should be no place whatsoever for grandstanding or playing to the gallery. We should all hit the ground running and in an atmosphere of conviviality, without undue tension and pressure,” Justice Olusiyi said.
The petitioner’s lead counsel, Adebayo Adelodun, (SAN), thanked the chairman and members of the panel for their commitment to be impartial as he assured that as officers of court they will give their best cooperation to ease the work.
On the other hand, counsels to Ortom, INEC and PDP; Sabastine Hon (SAN), Oba Maduabuchi and O. E. B Offiong (SAN) respectively moved application for regularisation and deeming the answers as properly filed and served.
The tribunal chairman, Justice Oluyisi, therefore, granted the applications as prayed and directed that all applications be taken alongside the substantive petition, adding that arguments on applications will however be taken on the day of adoption of addresses.