Supreme Court on Thursday declared that President Tinubu had the highest votes in the 2023 presidential elections.
The judge added that Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi were unable to prove that they secured a higher number of votes than President Bola Tinubu in the 2023 presidential election.
This was stated by the Supreme Court when ruling in favour of President Tinubu in an appeal filed by the appellants contesting the verdict of the Presidential Election case Court, which had dismissed his case challenging Tinubu’s election.
In his decision on Atiku’s appeal, the panel’s presiding justice, John Okoro, stated that nowhere in the appeal did the appellant identify a specific number of votes he received in the election to counter Tinubu’s score and establish that his score was not entirely allotted to him.
The apex court upheld the election petition court’s judgment where it stated that “the table referred to by the petitioners is the table of results declared by the first respondent. There is no other set of results placed before this court by the petitioners to form the basis of our finding or the fact as to whether the declared results are wrong or not.
“Success or failure in an election depends on figures which is in turn depending on votes garnered by each candidate.
“So, where the complaint in an election petition is that the candidate returned did not poll the majority of the highest votes in the election, as contended here by the petitioners, not only must the figure disputed be pleaded, the figures or votes the petitioner perceives as correct figures of the election ought to and must be pleaded.”
Supreme Court also affirmed the ruling of the election petition court, which noted that “Section 134(2) of the 1999 Constitution talks of the highest number of votes cast at the election if the contest was among more than two candidates as in the instance case, not majority of votes cast as propounded by the petitioners.
He said, “The first respondent was therefore right from the results declared by her in the absence of any rival or alternative results placed before this court by the petitioners; that the second respondent who scored 8,794,726 votes as against 6,984,225 votes scored by the petitioners in the election, scored the highest number of lawful votes cast in the election.”
Justice Okoro therefore said that the ruling of the election petition court “represents the correct position of the law and I wholly endorse the same.”
Independent National Electoral Commission on March 1 declared Tinubu of the ruling All Progressives Congress as the president-elect.
According to INEC, Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor, polled a total of 8,794,726 votes to defeat his closest challengers, Atiku who scored a total of 6,984,520 votes and Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP) who scored a total of 6,101,533 votes.
Justice Inyang concluded saying, “Nowhere, definitely, not from the evidence on the record and that is why this issue is resolved against the appellants.”