The counsel representing Nigeria’s main opposition party, PDP, has asked the presidential election petition tribunal to allow them to present video clips as evidence in the ongoing hearing of their petition.
The PDP also requested to bring the spokesperson of the Atiku Abubakar Presidential campaign, Shegun Showunmi, as a star witness in the matter.
Mr Showunmi, whose name is listed as the third witness to be presented by the PDP, was introduced as the star witness by the party on Monday.
A lead counsel for the PDP, Chris Uche, made the application at Monday’s hearing of the tribunal.
Mr Uche, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria said the items of evidence were just made available to the counsel and his clients believe the law allows them the right to present their evidence, as they come.
But, citing paragraph 4: subsection (6) of the first schedule of the evidence act, the APC argued that the PDP cannot present the evidence as they are not entitled to do so.
The section provides that: “Evidence may be given in any suit or proceeding of the existence or non-existence of every fact in issue and of such other facts as are hereinafter declared to be relevant, and of no others: Provided that –
(a) the court may exclude evidence of facts which, though relevant or deemed to be relevant to the issue, appears to it to be too remote to be material in all the circumstances of the case; and
(b) this section shall not enable any person to give evidence of a fact which he is disentitled to prove by any provision of the law for the time being in force.
The application was vehemently opposed by the APC and INEC lawyers who argued that the video, likely a product of a media publication may be fabricated.
“What the media will be reporting will be another thing,” said INEC’s lead counsel, Yunus Usman.
But, in a reaction, Mr Uche challenged the APC to present their own clips: “Let’s make progress, you can bring your own video,” Mr Uche said.
The court, presided over by Garba Mohammed, said it will reconvene after an hour to decide both applications.