The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has denied being in possession of the server where results of the February 23 presidential election were uploaded. INEC’s position was made known at the ongoing Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal in Abuja challenging the outcome of the election.
Atiku Abubakar and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had through their lawyers led by Levy Uzoukwu (SAN) asked the tribunal to compel INEC to grant them access to the server and smart card readers used in the conduct of the election. But counsel to INEC, Yunus Ustaz Usman (SAN) in a counter affidavit asked the court to dismiss the application.
“They are asking us to bring something we don’t have,” he said. He drew the attention of the tribunal to its judgment on March 6 granting PDP access to inspect only election materials without the server. Counsel to President Muhammadu Buhari, Wole Olanipekun (SAN) and the All Progressives Congress (APC), Lateef Fagnemi (SAN) both asked the court to dismiss the application for failing to disclose the existence of the server.
Atiku had claimed that results from the INEC server showed that he scored a total of 18,356,732 as against 16,741,430 votes by Buhari. INEC had through manual collation announced President Buhari winner of the election with 15,191,847 votes with Atiku polling 11, 262,978.
The proceeding was witnessed by the vice presidential candidate of the PDP, Peter Obi, who represented the presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, and the former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Nuhu Ribadu, who represented President Buhari.