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JT Useni’s Petition Against Gov. Lalong: Court begins hearing as 6 witnesses testify before Tribunal

Plateau State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting at the High Court 7, West of Mines Jos, has commenced hearing hearing of Governorship Petition between Senator Jeremiah Timbut Useni of the People’s Democratic Party P-D-P and Rt. Hon. Simon Bako Lalong of the All Progressives Congress A-P-C today 27th June, 2019.

The three-member tribunal Chaired by Justice Halima Salman which began the day’s Session at about 10:27am had at least six witnesses so far who testified to the Governorship Elections Tribunal sitting in Jos, against the authenticity of results that returned Governor Simon Bako Lalong as duely elected Governor of Plateau State.
During the hearing on the main elections petitions session, Petitioner Senator Jeremiah Useini’s First witness Professor Dimis Mailafiya who first pleaded with the Tribunal to adopt his Party’s Statement as a legal document tender before the court and acknowledged signing same, says, during examination by the first, second and third respondents that, “he rely on the exhibit tender before the Tribunal in support of his petitions”.
Second witness AWWALU MUAZU a trader who Lives in Ungwan Kuyambana Wase LGA also testified before the Tribunal in Hausa and interpreted by John Dalyop was earlier placed on oath also Identified his signature on his deposition before the court, alleged over-voting in his polling Unit.
Muazu’s claim is that “the results sheet he signed had no presiding officer’s countersigned portions on it contrary to the one provided by the Second respondent”
Third witness on his part Shehu Jibril of same Wase Local Government Area, admitted his deposition as signed on April 13th, 2019 during examination but told the Court that, it was one Haris Adamu who signed the results sheet and not him.
Other witnesses were Rabiu Haliru ,Nazifi Sule Babale, all also from Wase Local Government Area complaint about issues of overvoting, falsification of results, and non accreditation of voters among others.
Barr Mike Ozekhome had earlier on informed the court that his team has filed the Petitioners’ issues for determination and served same on the Respondents
Though there were seems glaring problems of Interpretation from Hausa to English Language as observed by Sawabiya, but the 6th witness Abubakar Abdullah Still of Wase, who testified using hausa language during examination by the first, Second and third Respondents complaint of “the process’ characterization by electoral irregularities such as over-voting.
He explained that,not all voters were accredited, and alteration of figures were also experienced.
Chief, Barr Mike Ozekhome, SAN, leading the Useni and PDP legal Counsel alongside Barr Edward Pwajok (SAN), Barr SG Odey and many other learned experts had uploaded the first batch of Certified True Copies (CTC) of INEC documents pleaded in the petition to includes Affidavit of personal particulars of second Respondent Simon Bako Lalong with attachments,
Declaration of Results of the Election to the office of the governor, Plateau State,
INEC Manual for Election for 2019, INEC official receipt for certification of relevant documents, Duplicate copies of statements of results Independent National Electoral Commission INEC Form EC8A for Wase LGA Wards and Polling Units among others.
On whether the issuance of service for determinations by the Court has reached those concerned parties, Counsels to all Respondents in the matter, admitted that they were duely served with the Petitioners’ notice of Petition.
Session was adjourned at 4:25pm for definite hearing on the Governorship petition, to be continued at the Tribunal today Friday by 9am.

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