The INEC, Nigeria's electoral body, has declared Bola Ahmed Tinubu the winner of the country's presidential election in 2023. Atiku Abubakar of the People's Democratic Party and Peter Obi of the Labour Party have both filed lawsuits challenging Tinubu's victory ahead of his scheduled inauguration on May 29.
Peter Obi's lawyer, Kenneth Okonkwo, has some reservations regarding Tinubu's victory in a piece published in The Sun. Okonkwo claims that Tinubu did not get the required 25% of the vote in the FCT, which is a violation of the constitution. He claims that election rules, the constitution, and INEC regulations were broken on purpose to cast doubt on the outcome of the vote. Furthermore, Okonkwo argues that people have proved throughout history that they are not likely to support a government whose authority is not derived from the people. He stresses that the new administration will be seen as an INEC-imposed winner rather than a president chosen by the Nigerian people if he is not sworn in on May 29 with supporting paperwork backing Tinubu's designation as the winner. For this reason, Okonkwo has requested that INEC provide the Nigerian people with documentation supporting Tinubu's claim of election victory.
Kenneth Okonkwo's claims provide insight into the legal battle surrounding the 2023 presidential election in Nigeria. Bola Ahmed Tinubu has been declared the winner, but his presidency is in jeopardy pending the outcome of a challenge filed by Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi. Okonkwo's allegations of violations of electoral laws and the constitutional threshold in the FCT call attention to the significance of openness and fidelity to democratic procedures. Tinubu's presidency, and by extension Nigeria's political scene, stands to lose considerable credibility and legitimacy regardless of the outcome of this court case. As events progress, INEC must answer these questions and give the Nigerian people evidence to back up their claim that Tinubu is the real victor of the election.
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