Politics

Tribunal blocks PDP request for forensic exams of Kano election materials

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The election petition tribunal sitting in Kano has denied an application by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to scan copies of electoral materials in the governorship election in the state.

In her ruling on the application on Tuesday, Justice Halima Shamaki said section 151 subsection 5 of the Electoral Act does not permit the court to authorise forensic examination of materials.

Mrs Shamaki, however, granted the PDP permission to access photocopies of the needed election materials in line with the same section of the Electoral Act.
She urged all parties involved to draw out the modality and time limit for the inspection of the materials.

The counsel to PDP, Maliki Kuliya-Umar, had on Monday filed a motion on notice requesting more time to access, do forensics and scan copies of the electoral materials.

But the led counsel to the All Progressive Congress (APC), Aliyu Umar, insisted the tribunal lacks the power to grant PDP’s application.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had also opposed the application. It said photocopies of electoral materials are in the public domain and could be obtained with or without court process.

PDP had obtained orders from the tribunal to access the materials with all parties observing the process.
The opposition party also requested an extension of the orders after exhausting 20 days.

The tribunal on April 9 had granted PDP an ex-parte order to inspect all the electoral materials used by INEC. But the party said it was only able to inspect the materials for 15 out of the 44 local government areas of the state

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