Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari welcomed the court ruling on Wednesday [File: Afolabi Sotunde/Reuters]

A Nigerian election tribunal rejected a bid by the main opposition candidate to overturn the result of February’s presidential election, which saw Muhammadu Buhari returned to office.

Defeated contender Atiku Abubakar, a businessman and former vice president, was the candidate of the main opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

“This petition is hereby dismissed in its entirety,” Justice Mohammed Lawal Garba said in announcing the ruling on Wednesday. All five judges who presided over the tribunal rejected Atiku’s claims.

The defeat for Atiku was widely anticipated. Buhari, a 76-year-old former military ruler, was re-elected after first taking office as an elected leader in 2015.

The tribunal rejected all three of Atiku’s

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