The #tribunal today headed by Justice Nasiru Gumi dismissed the three(3) motions sought by #Okowa, #PDP and INEC to set aside the fundamental right of Olorogun Otega Emerhor and #APC to subpoena INEC’s ICT staff to appear as a witness and also tender documents that will indicate Okowa and PDP’s culpability in #election fraud and manipulation during the governorship election.
The respondents; Okowa, PDP and INEC had filed separate motions in unionism to set aside the leave granting Olorogun Otega Emerhor and APC to subpoena the INEC staff as a witness to tender evidence on the 14th of August 2015.
The motions were to void the request of the subpoena to order the appearance of INEC staff.
The respondents had stated that the petitioners had not pleaded and listed the subpoena in the right way and also tried in vain to convince the tribunal that the petitioners had no room for additional witnesses which in actual fact the petitioners didn’t request for.
The petitioners through their counsel Chief TJ Okpoko SAN had at inception of the tribunal filed properly the motion to call in seven witnesses and 2 subpoenaed witnesses as a legal right of Olorogun Otega Emerhor and APC.
Chief TJ Okpoko SAN argued in court that it was the supreme right of the petitioners to subpoena the INEC staff based upon the laws enshrined in the fundamental human rights acts that his client enjoys.
The tribunal made it clear that Olorogun Otega Emerhor and APC through their counsel had rightly filed the motion for the subpoena and that Okowa, PDP and INEC can not dictate to the tribunal and the petitioners what kind of witness to call.
The tribunal further stated that the respondents can not in any circumstance step aside the motion for subpoena of the INEC staff. The tribunal also stated clearly that Olorogun Otega Emerhor and APC had not erred with the payment of the specified fee with regards to the subpoena.
The chairman of the tribunal lambasted Okowa and PDP for time wasting using all manners of delay tactics, Okowa and PDP were warned not to use any technicality to impede Justice.
INEC received harsh words from the tribunal for also their dubious roles in trying to delay hearing, the tribunal reminded INEC that it was suppose to be a fair umpire and therefore allow the petitioners access to electoral materials it sought without hindrance since the required materials/evidences were in possession of INEC. The tribunal also told INEC that they will also have the opportunity to cross examine the witnesses and evidences tendered since it belonged to them.
The tribunal reminded the petitioners, respondents and the court room that “subpoenas” are authorized in the name of the ” #President, commander in chief of the armed forces” thereby stating its legality and validity.
The tribunal after dismissing the baseless motions of the respondents by stating that the respondents have not shown any good reason to set aside the subpoena also stated that it is within the jurisdiction of the tribunal to grant subpoenas while advising them that the tribunal will listen to motions based on merit rather than frivolous technicalities.
At the end the tribunal reminded everyone that time had been spent and it intends to give judgement speedily.
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