Atiku Abubakar, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, has disputed the ruling of the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal (PEPT) that confirmed Bola Tinubu’s victory in the February 2023 election.
While the court dismissed Atiku’s plea, as well as that of his Labour Party (LP) opponent Peter Obi and the Allied Peoples Movement (APM), the main opposition party’s flagbearer claims he is undeterred and has asked his attorneys to appeal the ruling.
“Gentlemen of the press, I take great pains to tell you that the decision of the court of first instance on this matter utterly falls far short of that expectation.
“I am therefore here to tell you that, though the judgment of the court yesterday is respected, it is a judgment that I refuse to accept. I refuse to accept the judgment because I believe that it is bereft of substantial justice.
“However, the disappointment in the verdict of the court can never destroy my confidence in the judiciary,” Atiku said in a press briefing on Thursday.
“Consequently, I have asked my lawyers to activate my constitutionally guaranteed rights of appeal to the higher court, which, in the instance, is the Supreme Court.
“It is my conviction that the electoral process in Nigeria should be devoid of untidy manipulations and that the outcome of every election should be a perfect reflection of the wishes of the electorate.
“I believe that such is the only way through which our democracy can have a manifest expression of its true meaning. Whether I prevail in this quest or not, the record of my effort in ensuring an order of credible elections in Nigeria shall remain for future generations to evaluate,” he added.
His party had already challenged the Tribunal’s decision, stating that it would discuss with its lawyers about the future steps.
Despite the fact that Tinubu was declared the winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Atiku claims he won the poll.