Appeal Court sitting in Abuja has nullified the judgement of the tribunal and reinstated Adeleke Ademola as Osun State governor
The Court of Appeal has decided to set aside the decision of the Osun State Governorship Tribunal and has upheld the governorship of the current governor, state senator Ademola Adeleke.
The Osun State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal’s January 27, 2023 decision to remove Governor Ademola Adeleke from office was overturned on Friday by the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja.
The appeals court issued its ruling in response to Adeleke’s appeal, which included 31 grounds.
The election, which was conducted on July 16, 2022, was won by Senator Adeleke of the People’s Democratic Party, but the tribunal declared the outcome invalid due to excessive voting.
As a result, a three-member tribunal panel imposed Adeleke’s dismissal and ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to revoke the certificate of return it had already given to Adeleke and instead issue a new one to Gboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress, who had been legitimately elected governor of the Osun state.
Adeleke did not win the majority of valid votes in the state’s governorship election on July 16, according to the tribunal.
The July 16 election for governor was called a triumph for Adeleke.
In August 2022, however, Oyetola, the former governor of Osun, and his party, the APC, petitioned the tribunal to challenge Adeleke’s victory on the grounds that he was not eligible to run for office and that there was excessive voting in 749 polling units across 10 local government areas of the state.
In the decision, two of the panel’s three judges found that Oyetola had substantially established that there had been overvoting in some of the polling places.
According to the appellate panel, which was led by Judge Mohamed Lawal Shuaibu, who rendered the decision, the tribunal erred by ignoring the problem Adeleke brought up in his preliminary objection to Oyetola’s petition.
Overall, the appeal is allowed because it is meritorious.
The panel decided that the first and second respondents must each pay the appellant N500,000 in costs. According to independent report.
Recall that Osun state governorship election tribunal had held that Adeleke did not score the majority of lawful votes during the July 16 governorship election. But that verdict has now been set aside by the Court of Appeal.
The three-man panel of judges, led by Mohammed Shuaibu, overruled the decision of the Tribunal.
The Court of Appeal holds that the tribunal was wrong to reach a conclusion on overvoting based on oral witnesses, as they considered information from the BVAS machine and voter registration.