Unable to meet up with the 14days deadline given to treat the Kogi Central Senate Election Petitions, the Tribunal on Saturday ordered the extension of the session to not more than 30 days.
This according to the Tribunal Chairman was in view of the series of pending applications that were filed by counsels after the last adjournment.
Recall that the National Assembly election petition tribunal sitting in Abuja had at the last prehearing on 2nd May, 2019 ruled to treat the petitions EPT/KG/SEN/08/2019 by Ahmed Ogembe, and EPT/AD/SEN/02/2019 by Natasha Akpoti in consolidation.
In that regards, the Tribunal sitting at the Chief Magistrate Court Wuse II has commenced treating the petitions as ruled.
The lead Counsel for Natasha Akpoti and the Social Democratic Party, E. Oboriole pleaded the indulgence of the Court to file a fresh motion on Monday, while stating that his team had filed responses to the motions they received accordingly.
He noted he will be calling out about 50 witnesses, while 147 were listed in the petition. He also indicated that Akpoti will be in the dock as one of the Principal witnesses.
Speaking for Ahmed Ogembe in the second petition, David Adegbe noted to have responded to two newly served motions from the second and third respondents, intending to present about 109 witnesses, while tendering certified copies of documents.
U. A Bukar, counsel for INEC, being the first respondent stated that they do not have pending applications but would be calling up witnesses, and tendering certified documents through the bar.
Abdulwahab Muhammed for second respondent, the All Progressives Congress intended to call-up 7 witnesses for EPT/AD/SEN/02/2019 and 5 witnesses for EPT/KG/SEN/08/2019. He also filed fresh motions on the 8th to replace that which he had filed on the 3rd.
Abdulwahab acknowledged responses and would be filing a reply in due time.
In the same light, P. Daudu who is the counsel for Yakubu Oseni intended to present 36 witnesses and 5 witnesses for petitions EPT/AD/SEN/02/2019 and EPT/KG/SEN/08/2019 respectively. He had also filed new motions and responded to the ones served them.
These newly filed motions and replies are responsible for the inability to beat the deadline, hence the extension.
However, the Tribunal has alloted 30 minutes for cross examination of Principal witnesses, and 5 minutes for other regular witnesses as the court pleased.
The court adjourned the session to Wednesday, May 22nd, 2019.