Adeleke wins at Appeal Court


THE Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, has upheld the election of Ademola Adeleke as the governor of Osun State.

In a unanimous ruling delivered by Justice Mohammed Lawal, the appellate court determined that Adeleke’s appeal, which he filed to contest the nullification of his election by the Osun State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, was meritorious.

Delivering judgment in the appeal filed by Adeleke on Friday, March 24, a three-member panel of justices held that the election tribunal erred when it ruled that the 1st and 2nd respondents (Gboyega Oyetola and the All Progressives Congress) proved their allegation of over-voting.

According to the panel of judges, Adeleke is the state’s duly elected governor.

Regarding forgery, the judgment stated that the tribunal is obliged to take cognisance of the decision that exonerated Adeleke of forgery and resolved the case against the respondent.

The judgement thereby set aside the tribunal judgment and awarded a cost of N500,000 against Oyetola and the APC.

The Appeal Court in Abuja reserved judgment on the appeal filed by Adeleke challenging his sack as Osun State governor on March 13.

Adeleke was represented by Onyechi Ikpeazu, SAN, while Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, represented Gboyega Oyetola.

Adeleke is the appellant, while Gboyega Oyetola and the All Progressives Congress (APC) are the first and second respondents, respectively.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are also the third and fourth respondents in the suit.

The Osun Governorship Election Petition Tribunal had ruled in favour of Oyetola, the state’s former governor, on January 27.

Two out of the three-member panel held that Oyetola was able to prove that there was over-voting in some of the polling units.

Adeleke rejected the judgment, describing it as a miscarriage of justice and an unfair interpretation against the will of the majority of voters.

In the 31 grounds of appeal, Adeleke prayed the appellate court for “an order setting aside the whole decision of the tribunal”.

He also sought an order “striking out the petition for want of competence and jurisdiction or, in the alternative, an order dismissing the petition on the merit”.

Adeleke submitted that the tribunal exhibited bias when it said, “the second respondent (Adeleke) cannot ‘go lo lo lo lo’ and ‘buga won’ as the duly elected governor of Osun State”.

INEC declared Adeleke the winner of the 2022 governorship poll in Osun State held on Sunday, July 17, 2022.

Adeleke, 61, defeated Oyetota with total votes of 403,371 against 375,027, a difference of 28,314 votes.

Adeleke won in 17 local government areas comprising Atakumosa West, Boluwaduro, Ede South, Ede North, Egbedore, Ejigbo, Ife North, Ifelodun, Ila, Ilesa West and Irepodun.


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