Mr. Peter Obi, the Presidential Candidate of the Labour Party (LP) says he rejected the Presidential Elections Petition Court judgment delivered on the outcome of February 25, 2023.
Obi spoke during a news conference at his Onitsha residence on Thursday.
He acknowledged that though the PEPC adhered to the statutory time frames, he totally disagreed with the judgment’s rationale and final conclusion.
“I express respect for the Court’s views and rulings but openly disagree with the judgment’s rationale and final conclusions,” he said.
Obi announced his intention, in his capacity as a presidential candidate and on behalf of the Labour Party, to immediately challenge this judgment through the appellate process.
According to him, the PEPC is not the ultimate authority in this matter, emphasizing that the responsibility now rests with the Supreme Court, which he expressed confidence in.
Obi urged Nigerians to maintain their focus, steadfastness, and commitment to peaceful processes while emphasizing the importance of adhering to the rule of law.
He made it clear that the matter has not yet reached its logical conclusion.
Obi hinted that his legal team has already received firm instructions to file an appeal against the PEPC’s decision.
He expressed unwavering determination in his pursuit of justice, not only for himself but also for the multitude of supporters across the nation whose electoral mandate he said was unjustly thwarted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Obi underscored the pivotal role of solid national institutions and the public’s confidence in them for a thriving democracy.
He pointed out that electoral litigations could be significantly reduced if INEC discharged its statutory functions transparently and fairly.
Obi extended his gratitude to every Nigerian who had supported their cause and the campaign for a New Nigeria built on principles of fairness, equity, justice, the rule of law, peace, prosperity, inclusiveness, sustainable growth, and development.
He thanked his legal team, the Labour Party, the Obidient Family, and all those who steadfastly attended the court proceedings.
Full Text of Peter Obi’s statement + Video
H.E. Mr Peter Gregory Obi, Presidential Candidate of Labour Party, Speaks on the 2023 Presidential Elections Petition Court (PEPC) Judgment On 7th September 2023, at Onitsha, Anambra state, Nigeria
1. Yesterday, 6 September 2023, the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC) finally delivered its long-awaited judgments on the Petitions challenging the outcome of the presidential election held on 25 February 2023. This judgment was delivered within the statutory time frame under the extant statutes. We acknowledge the Court’s contributions to due process and the seeming attempt to strengthen our democracy.
2. As petitioners in this case, we respect the views and rulings of the Court, but we disagree with the Court’s reasoning and conclusions in the judgment it delivered. It is my intention as a presidential candidate and the intention of the Labour Party to challenge this judgment by way of appeal immediately, as allowed by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
3. The PEPC has rendered its judgment, but that esteemed body is not the final arbiter. The responsibility now falls on the Supreme Court. I do know that judgment is not coterminous with justice. I implore Nigerians to remain focused, steadfast, and peaceful; and to abide by the rule of law and understand that this matter has not reached its logical conclusion.
4. Our legal team has already received our firm instruction to file an appeal against the decision. I shall not relent in the quest for justice, not necessarily for myself but indeed for our teeming supporters all over the country whose mandate to us at the polls was regrettably truncated by INEC.
5. The strength and value of our democracy reside in solid national institutions and our confidence in them. Electoral litigations will be almost unnecessary and nonexistent if the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) discharges its statutory functions creditably, transparently and with discernible fairness. When that body fails, as it did recently, thus subverting the will of Nigerian voters, the recourse to the judiciary becomes imperative, as is now the case.
6. I thank every Nigerian who has supported our cause and campaign for a New Nigeria characterised by fairness, equity, justice, the rule of law, peace, prosperity, inclusiveness, sustainable growth, and development. A NEW NIGERIA IS POSSIBLE and achievable. I especially thank our legal team, the Labour Party and Obidient Family and all those who showed up daily during the court trials. God bless you all, and God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”