The National Assembly Election tribunal sitting at Plateau State High Court on No, EPT/AA/SEL/11/2019 filed by Nde David Shifkfu Parradang the former Immigration Boss, against INEC, Hezekiah Dimka, and the APC challenging the declaration of Hezekiah Dimka as Senator Elect of Plateau Central Senatorial Zone, has reserved judgement.
The first respondent counsel told the tribunal that the matter was slated for adoption of written address; we hereby adopt it as our final written address and sought the relief of the tribunal to dismiss their petitioners complained.
The 1st Respondent INEC began with application to file 3 processes their final written addresses and a reply to Petitioners and authority dated 2nd August, 2019 when the Tribunal granted the applications.
The INEC counsel ,( 1st Respondent) urged that Tribunal should dismiss the Petitioner’s claim that, the Petitioner’s lack prove of evidences before the court that there is not substantial grounds enough to proceeds , because the Petitioners did not file their case on time and witness who testified before the court was not part of the Petitioner’s list of witnesses.
The Hezekiah Dimka,who is the ,2nd respondent counsel has opposed the 1st respondent saying, “ My Lord , we all consented and adopted this in our prehearing session the issue raise by the 1st Respondent” ,as the 1st respondent applied to abandon argument and was granted.
The Petitioners final written address which was adopted and its center on witness testifying without been front loaded in the documents tendered without receipt, among others.
However, Petitioner’s Counsel,Sunday Oyawole argued citing case of Belgore -vs- Ahmad 2013, precedence the judgment obtained from the supreme Court.
According to the Petitioners counsel, Barr. Oyawole who based his arguments on the fact that his filed his written address within time in response to the respondents case in the matter.
The documents obtained from the INEC, The Petitioners said each of the documents attached on it were evidences of payment which were signed and stamped by INEC and the 1st Respondents did Confirmed same to be documents true certified copies from INEC before they were been adopted and admitted in evidence.
The Counsel to the 2nd Respondent ,APC ,Garba Pwul’s in final written address called on the tribunal to dismiss the petitioners ,(Mr David Paradang’s ,PDP, petition for lack of merit where he claimed that, “petitioners complained shortchanged of over 1000 votes in Sabon Layi units of Kanam LGA which he abandon five Local Governments that made up the Plateau Central Senatorial Zone constituency, Mangu, Bokkos, Pankshin, Kanke and Kanam LGAs.
Pwul in his, submission raised concerned that, two LGAs were not mentioned to proof their allegations of over voting, irregularities in the votes and “omission”.
Pwul argued further that “the Petitioner’s claims of over-voting are contrary to the definition of over-voting as prescribed in the S: 53(2) of the electoral act, hence submitted that, tendering of voter’s Register is a critical evidence in this case,”
He stated,” the petitioners having failed to prove votes scored lawfully cannot be declared winners of the Elections, referring Tribunal to the case of Jang -vs-Dariye 2003″.
The Petitioners counsel said, ” Petitioners filed his written addresses dated 26th July, 2019 urged the Tribunal that, they have come to adopt same, where they have clearly stated in the document how they were one thousand not recorded votes in Kanam Local Government Area
The Petitioners Counsel tendered and admitted Exhibit P3 form EC8A of same and was confirmed by the Coalition officer of kanam ,Mr Tolulokpe Okpe.
The best evidence has been tendered and Respondents does not need a revotal evidence to aid the basis of our support”
He stressed that, “the facts and evidences laid by the Petitioners in the Petitions particulars has clearly support the allegations of corrupt practices and none compliance with Electoral act.
As he was seeking the tribunal to grant them their prayers based on facts and evidences laid”
The Petitioners complained of “cancelations, alterations of two Polling units in Kanam LGA in forms EC8A which clearly explain by all witness where there is no contradictory evidences that results of those units were cancelled by their Presiding officers”
He backed his argument on that note with S: 54(2).
Petitioners seek to adopt all the documents tendered before the Tribunal in support of their argument and prayed that the Tribunal grants all relief sought in the Petition.
Having listened to submissions of all parties in the suit, the Tribunal reserved judgment said it would communicate all counsels.