I was Atiku’s classmate, he is not from Cameroon, witness tells tribunal

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A former Ambassador, Mabien Samadi, on Tuesday, testified before Presidential Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja, to debunk the allegation that the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Atiku Abubakar is a Cameroonian citizen.

Samadi who said he was a one time ambassador of Nigeria to Romania, said told the tribunal that Atiku was his classmate and childhood friend. He said they both attended Provisional Secondary School in Yola, Adamawa State, in 1961.

“I know as abduct that the 1st petitioner was born on 25 November 1948 in Jada, present day Adamawa state by Nigerian parents and he is therefore a Nigerian by birth”, he added. It will be recalled that the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, had urged the tribunal to dismiss the joint petition that Atiku and PDP lodged to challenge President Buhari’s re-election. Aside challenging the legal competence of the petition dated March 18, the APC which is the 3rd respondent, alleged that Atiku was originally a Cameroonian, saying he lacked the locus standi to institute the action against Buhari.

However, fielding questions under cross-examination, the ex-Ambassador told the tribunal that he met Atiku’s mother, Aisha Tande, in 1965, while he was in secondary school.

Asked by counsel to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Yunus Usman, SAN, if he was there when Atiku’s mother gave birth to him, the witness said: “I was not in Jada when he she gave birth to Atiku”.

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