Kogi Guber: PDP to call 259 witnesses against Bello

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its governorship candidate in the last gubernatorial election in Kogi State, Engr. Musa Wada, on Monday listed a total of 259 witnesses they planned to call to prove their petition against the return of Mr. Yahaya Bello as governor.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had declared Governor Bello and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), winners of the November 16 governorship poll marred by widespread violence.

But Wada and PDP alleging rigging and other malpractices, approached the Kogi State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal to nullify the return of Bello as governor.

Defendants in the petition include the INEC, Bello and the APC.

The three-man tribunal headed by Justice Kashim Kaigama had on January 30, after listening to parties, adjourned till Monday for hearing proper on the pre-hearing applications, ThisDay reports.

Before adjourning the matter till Thursday, parties also took time to agree on the number of witnesses to be called as well as documents to be tendered in evidence.

The counsel to the petitioners, Jibril Okutepa (SAN), told the tribunal that his clients have listed 259 witnesses to give evidence in court within 14 days.

Meanwhile, the counsel to the first respondent, Dr. Alex Izinyon (SAN), had announced that his client, (INEC) has listed 271 witnesses.

Also, the counsel to the second respondent, Chief Joseph B. Daudu (SAN), announced that his client, Governor Bello, has 120 witnesses on his list, while the counsel to APC, Ahmed Raji (SAN), announced a total of 250 witnesses.

Each of the respondents had prayed the court to allow them call all their witnesses within the stipulated 10 days.

In his ruling, Justice Kaigama reduced the number of days the petitioners have to call their witnesses to 10 days each, while those of the respondents are reduced to six days each.

The pre-hearing session continues on Thursday.

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