Nigerians are anticipating the decision of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal, and the Ohanaeze sociocultural group has warned the judges against making a mistaken decision.
Ohanaeze forewarned that if the judges render an incorrect decision, Nigerians might witness a situation similar to the military coup in the Niger Republic.
The body cautioned the judiciary to exercise independence in its judgment of the general elections in Nigeria scheduled for 2023, which are tainted by claims of irregularities and violations of electoral laws.
Okechukwu Isiguzoro, the group's factional secretary-general, claimed that the failure to follow the electronic transfer of election results from polling places to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) central server, known as IREV, added to these worries.
In a statement, Isiguzoro said: “As Nigerians eagerly await the verdict of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT), their expectations are high for an unbiased and uncompromised judgment.”
“Additionally, the interpretation of the constitutional requirement for a presidential candidate to win 25% of 2/3 of the states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) of Abuja is a crucial issue that the judiciary must address.
“We emphasize the consequences of an erroneous judgment in light of recent events such as the Nigerien military coup. The apex Igbo cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has cautioned the PEPT judges against making any errors in their verdict. Nigerians understand the gravity of this warning and recognize the potential consequences of an erroneous judgment. The judiciary must consider the broader implications of their decisions, as a flawed verdict could undermine public confidence in the democratic process and lead to social and political unrest.
“Recent events, such as the military coup in Niger, serve as a stark reminder of the fragility of democracy and the importance of upholding the rule of law. Nigerians have witnessed the disastrous consequences of political instability and the erosion of democratic institutions. The PEPT must bear these lessons in mind and recognize the pivotal role they play in upholding the integrity of the electoral process and preserving Nigeria’s democracy.
“The expectations of Nigerians for the 2023 Presidential Election Petition Tribunal are rooted in the desire for an unbiased and uncompromised verdict.”