Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has been granted access to inspect the electoral materials used by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), for the conduct of the February 23 polls, by the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
According to Punch, the tribunal rejected their request to be allowed to conduct forensic examination and forensic analysis of the materials and have access to smartcard reader data and information contained in the smart card reader, cloud and electronic storage used for the polls.
Delivering the lead ruling, Justice Aboki said by virtue of the provisions of section 151 of the Electoral Act on which the applicants’ motion ex parte was anchored, Atiku and his party were only entitled to inspect the electoral materials and the certified true copies of all the materials used for the polls. He said:
After a careful consideration of the application, a perusal of section 151 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) and the decisions of this court in Aregbesola Vs Oyinlola 2009, Akintayo Vs Jolaoye and Hope Uzodinma Vs Osita Izunaso, it is hereby ordered:
Leave is granted to the applicants to bring this application.
The first respondent (INEC) shall allow the applicants to inspect the polling documents and be given the certified true copies of the polling documents used for the conduct of the presidential election across the country to enable them to institute and maintain their election petition.