Ibrahim Mohammed, Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Bode Rhodes-Vivour and five other justices of the Supreme Court are on the panel hearing Atiku Abubakar’s appeal against the judgement of the tribunal affirming the election of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Sylvester Ngwuta and Mary Odili, both senior justices, are not on the panel.
The constitution of the panel has been a subject of controversy.
A caucus of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the house of representatives had asked that Odili, Ngwuta and Rhodes-Vivour be appointed to the panel to hear the appeal.
Atiku, PDP presidential candidate in the last election, had filed an appeal at the apex court to challenge Buhari’s victory at the election petition tribunal.
It is a tradition at the supreme court for senior justices, including the CJN, to preside over presidential election appeals.
Odili, a senior justice, is the wife of Peter Odili, former Rivers state governor and founding member of the PDP.
Ngwuta, a senior justice, resumed duties at the Supreme Court in September after being prosecuted for alleged corruption by the Buhari administration.
Besides the CJN and Rhodes-Vivour, the other justices currently hearing the appeal are Olukayode Ariwoola, Amiru Sanusi, John Okoro, Ejembi Eko and Uwani Abba-ji.