HDP wants court to stop Buhari’s inauguration.
Court adjourns suit to May 22 because defense team were not duly served.
The Hope Democratic Party (HDP) has filed a motion before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja for an order to restrain the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) from swearing-in President Muhammadu Buhari on May 29.
The party alongside its presidential candidate, Chief Ambrose Owuru on Tuesday in Abuja further applied for an order of the tribunal to restrain President Buhari from presenting himself on May 29 or any other date “for swearing in or inaugurate ceremony or taking the Oath of Allegiance and oath if office as the President of Federal Republic of Nigeria, pending the determination of this petition and the question as to whether he has been validly elected as challenged and pending before the court”.
The party is currently challenging the declaration of President Buhari as winner of the February 23 presidential election In their petition marked CA/ PEPC/001/2019.It, therefore, urged the tribunal to nullify the outcome of the election and order a fresh poll.
It could be recalled that Owuru who scored a total of 1,663 votes in the presidential election. He is insisting that the election was not conducted in compliance with the Electoral Act.
On his part counsel to President Buhari, Mr Wole Olanipekun, he said he needs time to go through the application and also said he has an application on behalf of the president seeking to dismiss the petition of the Hope Democratic Party.
In his reply, Counsel to the HDP, Mr Oliver Enya told the tribunal that he will be objecting to the application because it touches on facts that are in the substantive suit.
The tribunal, therefore, said it will longer hear the application to stop the President’s inauguration because parties have not been served.
In other to respond to the motion, President Buhari, the All Progressives Congress (APC), and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) persuaded the tribunal to grant a short adjournment.
Consequently, the Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa led tribunal which is conducting its proceedings at the Court of Appeal Headquarters in Abuja, adjourned the the case till May 22 for hearing.
Other petitions challenging Buhari’s victory are filed by other political parties which include the major opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.