Zainab Bulkachuwa, president of the court of appeal, has recused herself from the presidential election petitions tribunal sitting in Abuja.
The judge decided to step down from the five-member panel of the presidential election petitions tribunal after a prolonged sitting on Wednesday.
“I have allowed the ruling on the application urging me to recuse my membership of the tribunal to test the position of the law,” she said.
“Now that the application has been dismissed on account of incompetence, I hereby announce my withdrawal from the panel.
“The remaining four members of the panel would remain while step would be taken to appoint my replacement.’’
The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) had asked Bulkachuwa to withdraw from the tribunal, saying she would likely be biased while handling the tribunal’s proceedings.
The PDP is alleging fear of pre-conceived bias since she is married to a senator-elect of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
In a letter signed by Uche Secondus, national chairman of the party, and Umaru Tsauri, national secretary, the party said Adamu Bulkachuwa, her husband, contested and won the Bauchi north senatorial district election under the platform of the ruling party during the February 23, 2019 poll.
“My Lord, it is no more a secret, that your dear husband, Hon. Adamu Mohammed Bulkachuwa, contested the February 23, 2019 election for the position of Senator in Bauchi North Senatorial district and won same on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC),” the petition read.
The tribunal subsequently fixed May 22, to entertain the application seeking her withdrawal.
The PDP and Atiku Abubakar, its presidential candidate in the February 23 general election, are before the tribunal to challenge the outcome of the presidential election.