Tribunal: INEC awarded illegal votes to Abiodun, says Akinlade

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THE governorship candidate of the Allied People’s Movement in the 2019 election in Ogun State, Adekunle Akinlade, has accused the Independent National Electoral Commission of awarding unlawful votes to Dapo Abiodun of the All Progressives Congress.

Akinlade stated this on Thursday while appearing as a “star witness” before the election petitions tribunal sitting in Isabo, Abeokuta.

Akinlade dragged Abiodun, INEC and the APC to the tribunal following the declaration of Abiodun as winner of the March 9, 2019 governorship election by INEC.

The APM governorship candidate said the electoral umpire erred by declaring Abiodun winner of the governorship election in spite of the alleged irregularities that characterised the election.

Akinlade, who was grilled for three hours before the tribunal, was the 37th petitioner witness to give testimony over the petition challenging Abiodun’s victory.

He was led in the evidence by his team lead counsel, Ahmed Raji SAN, and cross – examined by respondents’ counsel, Prof Taiwo Osipitan (SAN), Adeyinka Olumide (SAN) and Kehinde Ogunwumiju (SAN).

According to Akinlade, the March 9 polls were fraught with over voting, improper votes counting and alleged non-compliance to the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).

Akinlade said, “I didn’t lose the election. He (Abiodun) didn’t defeat me. After the March 9 election, we did our reviews and analysis, and then we discovered there were some illegalities.

“My Lord, I want the tribunal to do justice to the petition. There were irregularities in the nomination forms of the second respondent.”

Akinlade, however, pleaded with the election petitions tribunal to ensure that justice prevailed in the suit.

The petitioner, who tendered forms EC8A from the affected polling units across the 20 local government areas of the state, urged the tribunal to admit same.

The tribunal led by Justice Yusuf Halilu, admitted in evidence, the pink copies of the forms as there were no objections from counsel for the respondents.

Earlier, the tribunal admitted in evidence the Certified True Copies of materials used for the election across the state. These included result sheets, voter registers, and smart card reader’s reports.

The matter was adjourned till July 5 (today) for continuation of hearing.

-PUNCH

BE

– July 5, 2019 @ 08: 37 GMT /

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