The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Thursday rested its case on evidence extracted from the petitioner and the documents tendered in the Benue State gubernatorial legal tussle.
All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate in the 2019 election, Barrister Emmanuel Jime, had petitioned Governor Samuel Ortom and his party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as well as INEC before the tribunal.
Our correspondent reports that INEC during the previous sitting of the tribunal applied for Thursday, August 15, 2019 to open and close its case.
And so at the resumption of trial, lead counsel to INEC Offiong Offiong (SAN) told the tribunal that, “Having taken a calm review of all that the petitioners have done and what we have achieved in cross examination, we think that evidence extracted from the petitioners and the documents they tendered are sufficient and we do not intend to call witnesses.
“In the event that there is any witness that we can tender documents from we will do so. That is the case of the 1st Respondent pursuant to Para 46 (5) of the First Schedule to the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).”
But Ortom’s legal representative, Edward Ashiekaa, (SAN) said the second respondent will be calling witnesses.
“If this were a civil process we would have taken the foot steps of the 1st respondent. But because election matters are ‘sui generis’, we will call witnesses,” Ashiekaa submitted as he applied for another date.
Ruling, chairman of the Tribunal, Justice Henry Olusiyi adjourned until Friday, August 16, 2019 for the 2nd respondent (Ortom) to open its case, adding that the 1st Respondent (INEC) by consent has five days to open and close its case.