The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal on Monday dismissed the application by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate in the last general elections, Atiku Abubakar, seeking to have access to an alleged server belonging to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The tribunal held that granting the application would mean pre-judging the main issue meant for trial during substantive hearing of the petition. The bench of five judges, led by Justice Mohammed Garba, dismissed the application in a unanimous ruling, upholding the objections by the three respondents.
Garba added that granting the application would imply that the court had “indeed recognised and found out that there is a central server into which results of the held on February 23, 2019 were electronically transmitted by the 1st respondent (INEC)”.
He said the Supreme Court had on many occasions warned judges to desist from “making observations, comments or pronouncements in its rulings with any likely effect of prejudging the main issue that can be regarded as the issue to be tried in the course of trial.”