The Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, has filed a suit at the Federal High Court in Abuja challenging the outcome of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) primary.
Of the 767 accredited ballots at the primary election, Atiku polled 371 votes while his closest challenger, Mr Wike, came second with 237 votes.
A former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, scored 70 votes to come a distant third while Governor of Akwa Ibom, Udom Emmanuel, came fourth with 38 votes.
Mr Wike seeks, among other prayers, the court’s pronouncement declaring him the PDP’s presidential candidate for the 2023 election.
In the suit, Mr Wike sued the PDP, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Atiku, and Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State as defendants.
According to court documents, the PDP is listed as the first respondent while Atiku is the 2nd respondent.
Punch newspaper reports that the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/782/2022, has Mr Wike and a PDP chieftain, Newgent Ekamon, as the plaintiffs.
In a supporting affidavit that he deposed, Mr Ekamon, the co-plaintiff, noted that he was a member of the PDP and attested to the fact that Mr Wike won the presidential election.
He maintained that Mr Tambuwal withdrew from the contest after voting had commenced and directed that his votes be assigned to Atiku.
“The third respondent (Tambuwal) speaking twice before stepping down from the contest, persuaded all his delegates who were going to vote for him to vote for the 4th respondent (Atiku).
“The 1st (PDP) and 4th (Atiku) respondents who also wanted the votes desperately agreed with the 3rd (Tambuwal) and assigned 3rd (Tambuwal) respondent’s votes to the 4th (Atiku) respondent and increased his votes to win the 2nd applicant (Wike).
“The 2nd applicant (Wike) won the primaries if the votes of the 3rd respondent (Tambuwal) had not been transferred or assigned to the 4th respondent (Atiku).”
In their prayers, Messrs Wike and Ekamon asked the court to declare that the purported transfer of Mr Tambuwal’s votes to Atiku is “null and void.”