The Osun State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Abuja has declared as winner Peoples Democratic Party and its candidate in the 2018 governorship election in the state, Ademola Adeleke, and held that Gboyega Oyetola OG the APC was not validly returned.
The Notice of Preliminary Objection filed by the Respondent on 24th November, 2018 has been struck out.
On the Non-qualification of 1st Petitioner (Adeleke)
Out of all the witnesses called by the 2nd Respondent (Oyetola), it was only RW11 that stated that the 1st Petitioner does not hava wassce Certificate. Again, there was no proof to substantiate same.
He who asserts must prove.
The 2nd Respondent argument on this is hereby discountenanced.
There were alterations in the CTC of Form EC8As tendered by INEC and the Pink copy tendered by the Petitioner. The figures were meant to the same. The fact that these figures were not the same indicate that the alterations were made after the election
In the final analysis, the petitioners have successfully proved that the pink copy is genuine
Now we are going to the issue of substantial non-compliance with the electoral Act.
If the Petitioner have tendered their own pink copy, why can’t the Respondent tender their own pink copy to controvert the evidence of the Petitioner?
From the pleadings of the Petitioner, evidence only shows that there was no supplementary election in Iwo LG as argued by the petitioners.
In an attempt to prove over-voting, the Petitioners called 38Witnesses and tender some Voter register. However, no single witness spoke about the voter register. They were only dumped on the Tribunal. It’s not for them to just dump them on the Tribunal. They should prove it.
In proving Over-voting, the failure of the Petitioner to tender the Voter Register and the Ballot papers used was fatal to their case. See the case of Nyesom v Peterside.
It is our considered opinion that the non-recording of the Accredited Voters on the result sheet in the form EC8A is deliberate and shows that something was amiss.
The failure of the 1st Respondent to record the Number of Accredited voters is to determine whether it constitutes an act of non-compliance of with the provisions of the Electoral Act, 2010
However, P74 testifying for the Petitioner, who also disclosed that he was not at majority of the PUs but he relied on the alterations in documents tendered cannot stand the test of the Law.
The effect of our findings means that the votes from affected Polling Units where there was no record of Accredited voters, no record of unused ballot or void votes makes the votes from those 17 Polling Units invalid
The lawfulness of the cancellation in 7 Polling Units
There was no challenge to the evidence of pw74 that it was the State Returning officer that cancelled election in 7 Polling Units. The burden to prove is satisfied and the burden has shifted to the Respondent
In final analysis, we have found that the cancellation of results in 7 PUs is unlawful. All votes emanating from those PUs are invalid
In the absence of any evidence that it is the Presiding officer that cancelled election in 7 Polling units, the Returning Officer cannot act outside his power. It is hereby held that the Supplementary election held on 27th Sep, 2018 is hereby invalid
In both situation, the Petitioner won the election.
Adeleke declared Governor!