Obi claimed that the February 25 presidential election was rigged to benefit President Bola Tinubu of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC.
Regarding Tinubu’s drug-related forfeiture in the United States, his first witness testified before the Presidential Election Petition Court, PEPC, in Abuja.
Mr. Lawrence Nwakaeti, Obi’s first witness, identified a document relating to a court proceeding in the United States of America, USA, regarding Tinubu’s alleged indictment in a drug-related case. Mr. Nwakaeti testified that he is from Ihiala, Anambra state.
INEC, through its lead counsel Mr. Abubakar Mahmood, SAN, stated that it had no objections to the admissibility of the document.
Both President Tinubu and the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, stated their vehement opposition to the document’s admissibility.
Tinubu and the APC stated that they would reserve their arguments against the document for their final briefs of argument.
Therefore, the five-member panel led by Justice Haruna Tsammani admitted the document as evidence and designated it as Exhibit PA-5.
The witness stated during cross-examination by INEC’s attorney that he was a registered voter who participated in the February 25 presidential election.
“I voted at my polling place, which is located in front of my house at Umuezella Village Square, using my Permanent Voter Card.”
The witness, who stated he was admitted to the Nigerian Bar as a lawyer on October 13, 2000, stated, “I did not play any other role besides fulfilling my civic duty.”
When asked by Tinubu’s lead attorney, Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN, if he had ever been to the United States, the witness responded, “Yes, my lords, I have been there at least once. The year was 2003. I had been in Michigan.
In a follow-up question, Olanipekun, SAN, asked the witness, “My learned friend, you stated emphatically in your testimony that the second defendant was fined $460,000.00. Do you still stand by your statement?”
The witness responded, “Yes, my lord, I stand by it.”
Olanipekun, SAN, asked, “Would you then be surprised that in the document you submitted, there is not a single line or word relating to the issue of fine?”
“My Lords, I will be surprised because he was fined, and the document speaks for itself,” the witness responded.
Olanipekun, SAN, inquired, “Are you aware if the aforementioned indicting document was registered in Nigeria or if any consular certificate was attached to it?”
“No, the event was not recorded. But the documents were properly certified, the witness stated, adding, “My lords, there is a certificate from the person who issued the certification. But there is no consular certification.”
Also asked if there was a certificate from a police officer in the United States where the alleged offence occurred.
The witness responded in the negative, stating, “My lords, there is no certificate, as the police played no role in the indictment.”
The APC, through its lead counsel, Prince Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, asked the witness if he was aware of a letter written by the Legal Attache to the US Embassy on February 4, 2003, clearing Tinubu of any involvement in the drug-related case.
“I am not aware of such a clearance letter,” the witness replied.
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