Tribunal admits Jegede’s exhibits against Akeredolu’s nomination, election malpractices

By Aare Abiodun Oluwarotimi reporting for Nigerian Concord

Despite rejections from the counsels to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, Ondo state chapter of the APC and the INEC, Lateef Fagbemi and Akin Olujimi, the three-man Governorship Election Petition Tribunal headed by Justice Justice Umar Abubakar today admitted all the exhibits tendered by the candidate of the PDP, Barrister Eyitayo Jegede SAN.

At the hearing today, Eyitayo Jegede insisted that Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu was not validly nominated by his party as candidate for the election.

Akeredolu was declared winner of the October 10 governorship election but Jegede, in his petition, is urging the tribunal to invalidate the victory of Akeredolu and declare him winner of the election.

Jegede who spoke while testifying at the resumed sitting of the Ondo Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal in Akure stated that Mai Mala Buni as a sitting Governor of Yobe State could not function as the Caretaker Chairman of the APC.

He said the nomination of Governor Akeredolu was contrary to the APC constitution and 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.

Attempts by Jegede to tender the election result, nomination form and the results of the election across the 18 local government areas of the state was rejected by counsel to the defendants, Lateef Fagbemi and Akin Olujimi.

During cross examination, counsel to the defendants, Lateef Fagbemi and Akin Olujimi noted Jegede, not being a member of APC, should not interfere in the internal affairs of the APC.

Counsel to INEC, Charles Edosanmwan said the cruz of Jegede’s petition was basically about APC’s primary and emergence of Akeredolu as candidate when he is not a member of the APC.

Jejede responded that he has every right to question the process that produced Akeredolu as the candidate for the election which he participated in.

Justice Umar said sitting would hold every day except on public holidays from 8am to 5pm.