CJN Inaugurates Election Petition Tribunal, Warns Against ‘Illicit’ Communications With Politicians

Chief-Justice-of-Nigeria-Justice-Mahmud-MohammedAbout 242 chairmen and members of Election Petition Tribunal for the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory were yesterday sworn-in by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Mahmud Mohammed for 2015 general elections.

In his remarks at the ceremony, the CJN charged members of the tribunal not to allow any political party or politician to compromise their integrity or future and not to descend so low.

“You must shun acts such as the acceptance of gifts or favours from counsel and politicians, and the exchange of illicit communications with parties, which acts will erode the integrity of the Tribunal irretrievably”, Justice Mohammed said.

Section 133 (3) (a) & (b) of the Electoral Act (EA) 2010, states that election tribunals must be established fourteen (14) days prior to the Elections and the Secretariat of the said Tribunals, opened seven (7) days before election.

The CJN pointed out that Section 134 of the Electoral Act (EA) was clear that all petitions must be filed within 21 days of the declaration of the result of an election.

He also reminded chairmen and members of the election petition tribunal that Section 285 of the 1999 constitution and Section 134 (2) of the EA 2010 are clear that all petitions must be heard and judgments rendered in writing and delivered in the open court within 180 days of the filing of that petition.

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