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Tribunal Affirms Abiodun’s Victory, Says Ogun PDP’s Petition Lacks Merit

The PDP and its governorship candidate, Ladi Adebutu, were challenging Abiodun’s re-election over alleged corrupt practices and non-compliance with provisions of the Electoral Act.


COMBO PHOTO of Mr Oladipupo Adebutu (L) and Governor Dapo Abiodun (R)

 

The Ogun State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal has declared Governor Dapo Abiodun, the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, as the duly elected winner of the March 18 poll.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its governorship candidate, Ladi Adebutu, were challenging Abiodun’s re-election over alleged corrupt practices and non-compliance with provisions of the Electoral Act.

The petition also argued that the governor did not score a majority vote to be announced as the winner by INEC.

Delivering the judgment on Saturday at a proceeding that lasted about 11 hours, the tribunal held that the petitioner failed to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt, then struck out and dismissed the petition.

The court also held that Abiodun was qualified to stand as the candidate of his party and his subsequent announcement by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as the winner of the election.

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Security operatives were deployed at strategic points in and around the courtroom to prevent any breakdown of law and order.

Counsels to the petitioner and the respondents were present in the courtroom which was filled to capacity.

Also in attendance were representatives of the two contending political parties, including the Deputy Governor of the state, Noimot Salako-Oyedele, and the PDP deputy governorship candidate, Adekunle Akinlade, and members of the National Assembly.

Around 9:10 am, the three-man panel began taking turns to read the judgment.

At the end of their submission, the court struck out the allegation of corrupt practices and non-compliance for being disjointed, defective and incompetent. It also struck out vote-buying allegations against the APC and its candidate.