The Presidency has responded to the Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, over his criticism of the Supreme Court Verdict which affirmed President Bola Tinubu as duly elected.
The State House said having lost his bid to have Tinubu’s victory upturned both at the presidential tribunal and apex court, it was time for Obi to accept defeat and support the president to deliver “inclusive governance” to the citizens.
“If Mr. Peter Obi truly believes in Nigeria, the time to prove it is now when all men and women of goodwill are rallying support for President Tinubu in his determination to lead a new era of prosperity, inclusive governance and economic growth in Nigeria,” Bayo Onanuga, Tinubu’s special adviser on information and strategy, said late Monday.
According to Onanuga, Obi made false allegations of rigging and other electoral malpractices in his petition filed before the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal but could not produce any evidence to back up his claims at both the tribunal and at the apex court.
“We wonder how the Labour Party candidate expected the courts to do justice on the basis of rumours, lies and false narratives by sponsored partisans and fanatical members of his Obidient Movement.
“We expected the Labour Party candidate to know that the Supreme Court or any other court does not give judgment based on public opinion and mob sentiments. Judicial pronouncements are based on evidence, precedents and the rule of law,” added the presidential aide who welcomed Obi’s decision to play an active role as an opposition political party.
Obi, during a press conference on Monday, had described the Supreme Court’s judgment as “deeply flawed” and “a betrayal of the Nigerian people’s trust in the judiciary.”
“The Supreme Court has exhibited a disturbing disregard for public opinion and has abandoned its responsibility as a court of law and policy,” Obi said.
He cited the “overwhelming evidence” of alleged election rigging, false claims of technical glitches, substantial non-compliance with INEC rules, perjury, identity theft, and forgery, which formed part of grounds he sought invalidation of President Tinubu’s victory.
“These were hefty allegations that should not be treated with levity. More appalling, the Supreme Court judgment willfully condoned breaches of the constitution relative to established qualifications and parameters for candidates in presidential elections. With this counterintuitive judgment, the Supreme Court has transferred a heavy moral burden from the courtrooms to our national conscience. Our young democracy is ultimately the main victim and casualty of the courtroom drama.
“Without equivocation, this judgment amounts to a total breach of the confidence the Nigerian people have in our judiciary. To that extent, it is a show of unreasonable force against the very Nigerian people from whom the power of the constitution derives,” the LP candidate declared.