The National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Ado Ekiti, Ekiti State has nullified the election of Senator Dayo Adeyeye as the winner of the National Assembly election in Ekiti South Senatorial District
Subsequently, the tribunal in a unanimous verdict, declared former Minority Leader and the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Biodun Olujimi, winner of the senatorial poll.
Following the declaration of Adeyeye, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the February 23, 2019 senatorial election in Ekiti South senatorial district, the candidate of the PDP, Senator Olujimi, had approached the tribunal praving that she should be declared the actual winner of the election .
She submitted that she scored the highest number of lawful votes cast during the keenly contested poll.
In the alternative, Olujimi prayed the tribunal for the outright nullification of Adeyeye’s victory and order supplementary election accordingly in the district.
In her written address, the petitioner claimed that the election was not conducted in substantial compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act, having been allegedly fraught with all manners of irregularities.
She prayed the tribunal to annul votes in areas that were found to be incredibly marked with irregularities like over voting, multiple thump printing, ballot snatching, ballot stuffing and improper ballot counting to know the actual winner of the poll.
The petitioner also accused INEC of dereliction of duties, saying most of the documents used for the conduct of the election were not duly signed by agents.
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But the respondents countered the submission, saying INEC did what was right and constitutional, by declaring the candidate of the APC the winner having found him to have got the highest number of lawful votes.
Delivering the judgment, the three-man tribunal, led by Justice D.D. Adeck, nullified elections in some polling units to declare Olujimi the authentic winner of the polls.
Eventually, Olujimi polled a total of 54,894 to emerge victorious over the Senate Committee Chairman on Media and Publicity, who polled 52,243.
Justice Adeck added that apart from the nullification in some units, the outcome of the tribunal’s verdict was predicated on the recount of the ballots by the contending forces as granted by the court.
Justice Adeck said for the petitioner to be so declared, she must prove those cases of criminal allegations of non-compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act and other corrupt practices raised in her petition beyond reasonable doubt which he said she did.
The tribunal said in Ikere, Gbonyin and Emure Local Governments, the petitioner was able to prove cases of over voting and votes in those units were expunged from the ballot.
On the voting patterns, the tribunal said: “It is not tenable to say that marked ballots were not properly deposited in the boxes because when this did not happen, then it will lead to over voting and will affect counting at every level of collation.
“To avoid this pitfall, those elections must be expunged in order not to vitiate the electoral process. Therefore, after those votes were deducted, PDP was left with 54,894, while the respondent polled 52,243.
“The petitioner having polled the highest number of lawful votes should be declared the winner of the election.
“We hereby declare the petitioner the winner and she is hereby returned elected.
“We hereby direct the INEC to withdraw the certificate of return from the respondent and issue same to the petitioner”, he said
Tribunal Affirms Ihedioha’s Election As Imo Governor
The Imo State Election Tribunal has affirmed the election of Emeka Ihedioha as governor of the state.
The chairman of the tribunal, Justice Umar Dogondaji, in his ruling on Saturday, dismissed the petition of Senator Hope Uzodinma because he did not discharge the burden of proof of the allegation that his results were excluded from the final results of the election.
He also dismissed the petition of the All Progressives Grand Alliance and its governorship candidate Senator Ifeanyi Arareume for lacking in merit as well as that of the candidate of the Action Alliance Party, Mr. Uche Nwosu, for incompetence.
The witnesses were discredited under cross-examination.
They all confirmed that there was no signature of the presiding officers on the documents they tendered as the results of the election in the various units in the state.
The judgment was delivered at the FCT High Court in Jabi, Abuja after a briefing in Owerri, the Imo State capital, where it had received and entertained several petitions.
The governorship candidates of the Action Alliance, All Progressives Congress, (APC) and All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), had filed petitions at the tribunal asking it to nullify the election of Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), on the ground that he was unlawfully declared as the governor of the state by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)
Ten Wedding Guests Died In Ekiti Road Crash
An accident involving wedding guest in Ekiti has occurred along Ado-Ikere road of the state which left many dead and several injured
At least 10 wedding guests have died in a motor accident on the Ikere-Ado Road in Ekiti State.
Several others also sustained injuries in the accident.
The accident involved an 18 seater bus with registration number Ekiti LG 05 MUE.
Eyewitnesses confirmed that the victims were returning from a wedding reception when the tragedy occured.
One witness, Abiodun, told Dammylink that the driver lost control of the vehicle’s wheel.
He said, “The vehicle was speeding and summasulted several times immediately the driver lost control of the wheel.
“I counted at least 10 bodies on the road before the arrival of officials of Federal Road Safety Corps.
Government Grants Amnesty To 13 Armed Bandits
Niger State Government has granted amnesty to 13 suspected armed bandits that were arrested by security operatives along Kontonkoro axis in Magama Local Government Area of the state.
Gov. Abubakar Bello disclosed this while delivering a keynote address at the 2nd General Abdulsalami Abubakar Foundation Annual Peace Lecture on Saturday in Minna.
He said the bandits were released based on the dialogue and peace deal as well as agreement reached by the government and the bandits from the area in August.
The governor said the peace accord reached had led to a gradual reduction in activities of armed bandits
and kidnappings in the area.
“After hearing them on why they decided to engage themselves in such activities, we had to go into a peace agreement with them in the interest of peace and for them to help us with useful information to tackle spate of insecurity in the state,” he said.
The governor noted that they have been cooperating and helping security agencies with useful information on how to identify unrepentant bandits who were still terrorising the state.
He said the repentant suspects have been engaged into various trade and skill acquisition programmes, adding that the same approach would be applied with bandits in Pandogari, Allawa and Erena areas of the state, NAN reports.
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