The Presidential Election Petitions Court has refused the 12 interrogatories by Peter Obi and the Labour Party (LP) to INEC technology experts used in the February 25 presidential election.
The five-member panel of justices led by Justice Haruna Tsammani on Saturday held that the application was made out of time.
The panel noted that in an election petition, a party who wishes to file further particulars or interrogators may do so not later than 10 days after filing the reply to the respondents reply.
“They filed their reply on April 21 while the request to serve interrogatories on INEC was filed on May 24, 2023,” Justice Tsammani said.
“Therefore, it was filed out of the statutory time as stated in the First Schedule of Electoral Act, 2022.”
Following the request made on June 8 by LP’s counsel, Patrick Ikwueto (SAN) for leave to move the interrogatories, counsel to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Kemi Pinheiro (SAN) had objected to the questions, arguing that having not been followed up at the pre-hearing session, they are deemed abandoned.
Counsel to President Bola Tinubu and Kashim Shettima, Akin Olujinmi (SAN) and the APC, Lateef Fegbemi (SAN) also adopted Pinheiro’s argument in objecting to the questions.
Among the 12 questions to INEC ICT experts by Obi and LP are “who created/deployed the four (4) Applications Patches/Update’ to fix the HTTP 500 error that prevented ‘the e-transmission of the results of the presidential election on 25th February 2023?
“If the presidential election was conducted concurrently with the National Assembly elections on the same day and at the same time, using the same technological devices, why were there glitches only with respect to the presidential election?”