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Calm Your Tempers - Tribunal Cautions INEC And Peter Obi Lawyers For ‘Fighting’ In Court

Posted by Thandiubani on Wed 14th Jun, 2023 -

According to the Tribunal, the lawyers should stop making derogatory remarks against one another.

The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) on Wednesday warned the lawyers representing the Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate, Peter Obi, and those of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) against 'fighting' in court.
According to the Tribunal, the lawyers should stop making derogatory remarks against one another.
During Wednesday’s proceedings, the lead counsel to Peter Obi, Livy Uzoukwu (SAN) accused the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu of dodging court summons.
Speaking at the resumed hearing of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT) in Abuja, Uzoukwu said the INEC Chairman has refused to accept a subpoena from the bailiff of the court.
After making his submission, he asked for an adjournment of the matter.
However, one of the counsels representing INEC, Oluwakemi Pinheiro (SAN), countered Uzoukwu, saying the petitioners are trying to blame his client for their own failures.
According to Pinheiro, it has become a habit of Obi’s legal team to always look for an excuse whenever they want to seek an adjournment.
“Don’t use INEC as a whipping boy. If they have nothing else to do today, they should just stay so. It is their day. It is not correct that the office of INEC Chairman refused to accept a subpoena.

“This habit is showing that you’re only stalling the case. You’ve only called two witnesses out of the 50 witnesses you said you would call and it has been two weeks since tribunal started,” the counsel added.
Responding to the outburst, the five-man panel led by Justice Haruna Tsammani told the lawyers to avoid denigrating each other.

“If there is anything that INEC is doing, you know what to do,” Justice Tsammani told Uzoukwu.
The panel also told the lawyers to “calm your tempers”, adding that whatever direction, the outcome of the case would go, “we are still friends.”
The court subsequently adjourned to Thursday for continuation of hearing.

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