The Presidential Election Petition Court has adjourned the pre-hearing of the petition filed by Peter Obi, the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, against President-elect Bola Tinubu. The adjournment came after factions within Obi’s party clashed at the Court of Appeal in Abuja, where the Presidential Election Petition Court is located. Lamidi Apapa, a factional Chairman of the party, was taken into protective custody by security operatives after being mobbed by youths at the court.
After the five-member panel, led by Justice Haruna Tsammani, adjourned the petition until Friday for the continuation of the pre-hearing session, Apapa attempted to address the media. However, a group of youths, identifying themselves as “Obidients,” pushed him away from the cameras, asserting that he did not have the right to speak for the party. Chaos ensued, with Apapa being pushed back and forth by the aggrieved youths, resulting in the tearing of his ‘Agbada’ and the snatching of his cap. Armed security operatives intervened and took Apapa into protective custody.
Earlier, when Apapa tried to announce himself as a representative of the party, a mild drama unfolded in the court. He attempted to sit in the line of chairs reserved for dignitaries and the petitioners, but he was blocked by party members, led by the LP’s National Youth Leader. Apapa then relocated to the line of chairs reserved for the general public.
It should be noted that Apapa is currently involved in a legal dispute with party executives who conducted the primary election that nominated Obi as the party’s flag-bearer. He had previously directed all the lawyers representing Obi to report to him for a briefing.