Lawyers representing Governor Simon Lalong and the APC at the governorship election tribunal on Wednesday accused PDP counsels of stalling tribunal proceedings.
Garba Pwul (SAN), counsel to the All Progressive Congress, while speaking with journalists after the tribunal’s sitting expressed his dissatisfaction at what he called the lackadaisical attitude the petitioners were showing on the matter.
Pwul said: “Apart from tendering documents before the tribunal the petitioners were not ready to continue with the proceedings.
“It is frustrating that it is the petitioners who are complaining, they are the ones who have dragged us before the tribunal to challenge the election, yet, they are the ones derailing the proceedings.
“We are ready to continue with the proceedings and we advise that the petitioners become serious because they are not up and doing, we want a serious change of attitude.”
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the People’s Democratic Party and its governorship candidate, Senator Jeremiah Useni, had dragged Lalong before the tribunal challenging his competence and victory at the 2019 gubernatorial elections.
Pius Akubo, counsel to Governor Lalong, on his part also expressed sadness that the petitioner’s counsels were not ready to proceed with the case.
Akubo, however, advised the petitioners to put their house in order and come ready to continue with their case.
He said: “We came with renewed energy to continue with the case but unfortunately the petitioners were not ready to proceed, they stated their witnesses were not readily available.
“We express our profound disaffection concerning the patent inability by the petitioners to proceed with their case.
“By nature this case is time sensitive, therefore, we don’t have time, we have made our point to the tribunal and it was well taken, we advise that the petitioners put their house in order and come ready tomorrow.”
Counsel to the petitioner, Mike Ozokheme (SAN), however, denied trying to stall proceedings stating that they had so far called 66 witnesses and tendered over 106 documents before the tribunal.
Ozokheme said that they were able to achieve this feat in just 10 days stating that they were ready to continue with the case immediately their witnesses were ready to testify before the tribunal.
Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Halima Salman had since adjourned the matter to July 11, to enable the petitioners present their additional witnesses before the tribunal.