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Atiku Gives ‘Details’ of INEC Servers, Set to Call Microsoft, IBM Experts as Witnesses

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The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the last election, Atiku Abubakar, is set to call Microsoft, IBM and Oracle experts to authenticate his claim that the servers belonging to the Independent National Electoral Commission showed that he defeated President Muhammadu Buhari by over 1.6 million votes.

Atiku also identified the server where the results are kept as INEC_PRES_RSLT_SRV2019 and its unique Mac address as 94-57-A5-DC-64-B9 with Microsoft Product ID 00252-70000-0000-AA535.

The PDP candidate said this in fresh response to the reply of INEC to his petition.

Atiku and the PDP will also be expected to tender INEC’s training manual on elections, a printout of the votes of candidates from smart card readers and a printout of the forensic audit report on INEC’s server as evidence.

The former Vice-President and the PDP claimed to have polled a total of 18,356,732 votes to defeat President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress who he said scored 16,741,430 votes.

However, INEC’s Director, Information and Communications Technology, Mr Chidi Nwafor, in his witness statement on oath attached to the reply, specifically denied the “server results” which the PDP and Atiku were laying claim to.

He said all the results were collated manually and were never transmitted electronically.

Atiku, in his fresh response, said the figures he claimed to have scored were genuine.

The reply read in part, “The servers from which the said figures were derived belong to the 1st respondent (INEC). The figures and votes were transmitted to the 1st respondent’s Presidential result’s server 1 and thereafter aggregated in INEC_PRES_RSLT_SRV2019 whose physical address or unique Mac address as 94-57-A5-DC-64-B9 with Microsoft Product ID 00252-70000-0000-AA535. The descriptions are unique to the 1st respondent’s server.”

On how the case would be argued, the PDP and Atiku stated, “The petitioners will at the trial of this petition rely on experts on Microsoft, IBM and Oracle, amongst others.”

The PDP candidate and his party said one of the spokespersons for the Buhari Campaign Organisation, Festus Keyamo (SAN), even attested to the fact that the election data was in INEC’s servers when he wrote a petition to the Inspector-General of Police calling on him to arrest Atiku.

The petition further stated, “The spokesperson for the second respondent’s campaign organisation (Keyamo) openly admitted that the data in question was in the first respondent’s server when he wrote and submitted a petition to the IGP and the Director of the Department of State Services asking the security agencies to investigate the second petitioner (the PDP) for allegedly hacking into the server of the first respondent (INEC) and obtaining the data in question.

“Specifically, Mr Festus Keyamo (SAN) claimed in the petition that it was the first petitioner (Atiku) who smuggled the data into the server. The petitioners (Atiku and the PDP) hereby plead the said petition to the security agencies and the second respondent is hereby given notice to produce them at hearing.”

The PDP and Atiku said INEC’s claim that the transmission of results was purely manual was a lie.

They made references to several press statements issued by INEC insisting that there would be an electronic component of results collation.

Atiku and his party said there was nothing in the Electoral Act that barred INEC from transmitting results electronically.

They said INEC also lied when it claimed that its directive on election day was that card readers should only be used in areas where they worked.

The PDP and its presidential candidate added, “The petitioners shall at trial lead evidence to show that the first respondent (INEC) stated on several occasions before and after the elections that the use of card readers was compulsory.”

The petitioners also stated that INEC through its Chairman and Returning Officer, Prof Mahmoud Yakubu, committed grave errors in the final collation of the presidential results.

The INEC boss was said to have muddled up the results, announcing the wrong figures for wrong political parties.

Atiku and his party said in the Form EC8E INEC falsely credited Rev. Chris Okotie (Presidential candidate of the Fresh Democratic Party) with a wrong political party and wrong scores and in the same vein, the INEC boss falsely credited Rev. Onwubuya Abraham (presidential candidate of Freedom and Justice Party) with a wrong political party and wrong scores.

The INEC chairman was also accused of falsely crediting Ojinika Chizee (presidential candidate of the Coalition for Change) and Abah Elaigwu (Change Advocacy Party) with the wrong scores and wrong political parties.

Meanwhile, the PDP has come to the defence of Atiku’s lead counsel, Dr Livy Uzoukwu (SAN), whom INEC claimed was not a legal practitioner and was not licensed to practise law.

In a witness statement signed by a former Minister of Aviation, Osita Chidoka, the party said Uzoukwu was called to the bar in 1982 and was even the attorney-general of Imo State from 1994 to 1996.

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Napoli Consider Renaming Stadium after Diego Maradona

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Napoli are considering renaming their stadium in memory of Diego Maradona after the club legend died aged 60.

Maradona, regarded as one of the greatest footballers of all time, forged a strong bond with the Italian club and its supporters during his seven-year spell between 1984 and 1991.

The forward, who inspired Argentina to World Cup glory in 1986, joined Napoli from Barcelona and won their only two Serie A titles – in 1987 and 1990 – along with the Coppa Italia and UEFA Cup.

Napoli president Aurelio de Laurentiis confirmed following Maradona’s death that the club will discuss renaming their stadium in his honour, combining its current title with his full iconic name, Sky reports.

“We can consider the idea of calling our stadium San Paolo-Diego Armando Maradona,” De Laurentiis told French sports channel RMC Sport.

Naples Mayor Luigi De Magistris supported the proposal that the city’s San Paolo Stadium be renamed for Maradona, who scored 81 goals in 188 appearances for the club.

“We are already putting it together this morning, taking the first steps to dedicate Naples stadium to Maradona,” De Magistris said.

The Mayor added: “We’re hoping to make it coincide with the resumption of games with fans.”

Fans gathered outside the stadium, which was lit in memory of Maradona’s time at the club, in the southern Italian city on Wednesday evening.

Tributes have poured in from the world of football and beyond, with three days of national mourning underway in Argentina.

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Implement People’s Demands Or Set Nigeria on Fire, Wike Tells Buhari

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Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to prove to Nigerians that he is ready to do the people’s requests.

The governor said the President will set the country ‘on fire’ by not implementing some of the requests voiced out by leaders during the recent discussions with the presidential delegation led by the Chief of Staff to the President, Ibrahim Gambari.

The PUNCH had reported that Gambari led ministers and federal lawmakers to meetings with leaders of the six geopolitical zones as a way of addressing concerns raised in the aftermath of the #EndSARS protests.

Gambari and the presidential delegation had met with governors and leaders of the South-South geopolitical zone in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, on Tuesday.

At the meeting, the South-South leaders including the Rivers State governor demanded the restructuring of the country in line with the principle of true federalism, saying it will guarantee peace, security and stability in the country.

Giving an update on the meeting on Thursday morning, Wike said the President still has time to implement the will of the people and etch a legacy for himself.

The governor spoke today on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily programme monitored by The PUNCH.

He said, “I am not a pessimist. I don’t believe that because you didn’t do what you agreed to do yesterday, therefore, you will not do what you agree to do today. Even if he (Buhari) has not done what he told Nigerians he would do, he can say, look, I promised Nigerians yesterday, I didn’t do that and that is affecting my integrity and so, for people who know me, I will implement what I have said.

“People have raised the issue that they don’t think anything will come out of the dialogues. I don’t agree with them. I believe that if the President does not do it, given the opportunity he has now, he will be putting Nigeria on fire.”

Continuing, Wike said political will to implement what the people want is key in governance.

According to him, the President has to show leadership by listening to Nigerians and by implementing the people’s requests.

“He may not necessarily implement everything the people may want but let the people see the concrete evidence that under President Buhari, he has been able to implement one, two, three, four demands by the people.

“If he (Buhari) doesn’t take this opportunity now to implement some of these requests, I don’t think it will be very good for Nigerians and for his legacy,” the governor added.

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Legendary Football Star, Diego Amando Maradona Dies at 60

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Diego Maradona, one of football’s greatest-ever players, has died. He was 60 years.

The 1986 World Cup winner had surgery to remove a blood clot on the brain earlier this month. The Argentine Football Association confirmed he had died this afternoon.

“The Argentine Football Association, through its president Claudio Tapia, expresses its deepest sorrow for the death of our legend, Diego Armando Maradona. You will always be in our hearts,” they said.

Another of football’s greats, Pele, has led the tributes to: “Certainly, one day we’ll kick a ball together in the sky above.” Follow latest updates and reaction here.

Dr Leopoldo Luque, Maradona’s personal physician, said the former player had shown signs of improvement after a successful operation three weeks ago.

Dr Luque said Maradona “laughed” and “grabbed my hand” just a day after he had the procedure.

“Diego is without any type of neurological deficit, without any type of complication associated with surgery,” Luque said, addressing reporters at the clinic’s door.

“He has an excellent post-operative period, the laboratory parameters even improved.

“The first impression is it is favourable, but it is difficult to evaluate.”

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