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Osun Guber: Supreme Court Dismisses Adeleke’s Appeal, Upholds Oyetola’s Victory

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – The Supreme Court has dismissed the appeal filed by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its Osun State Governorship candidate former Senator Ademola Adeleke and upheld the victory of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

The court in a split decision of five to two, Friday held that the proceedings and the majority judgment of the Osun State Election Petition Tribunal which had declared the PDP as the winner of the poll were a ‘’nullity’’’.

In a leading ruling, Justice Bode Rhodes-Vivour held that the absence of Justice Peter Obiorah who later read the lead judgment of the Tribunal during the February 6, 2019 hearing, had rendered the entire proceedings of the said tribunal and its judgment a nullity.

The judgement was consented to by the Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Tanko Ibrahim Muhammad and three other members the panel.

The remaining jurists were Justices Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, Amiru Sanusi, and Uwani Abba-Aji.

The majority ruling was however contested by Justices Kumai Akaahs and Paul Galinje. They both upheld the ruling of the State Election Tribunal which in February declared Adeleke as the winner of the keenly contested election.

The five Justices of the apex court affirmed the majority judgment of the Court of Appeal on May 9, 2019 and dismissed the majority judgment of the tribunal delivered on March 22, 2019

They held that a member of the tribunal, Justice Peter Obiorah, was absent from the proceedings of February 6, 2019, but went ahead to deliver the lead majority judgment of the tribunal when he was not available to watch the demeanour of the witnesses who testified that day.

The judges contested that Justice Obiora’s absence at the said proceedings had rendered the entire proceedings of the tribunal including the tribunal’s lead judgment which he authored, declaring Adeleke and the PDP the winner of the poll was a ‘’nullity’’.

However, the dissenting ruling held that the conclusion that Justice Obiora did not participate in the February 6, 2019 proceedings of the tribunal “was based on conjecture” or at best “a well-articulated speculation”.


Short URL: https://www.africanexaminer.com/?p=48874

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