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Game over for Oyetola as Adeleke wins at Supreme Court

Oyetola and Adeleke

Gboyega Oyetola and Governor Adeleke

The Supreme Court in Abuja has declared Governor Ademola Adeleke as the winner of the July 16 governorship election in Osun State.

Delivering judgment on Tuesday, a five-member panel of the apex court held that the court of appeal correctly reinstated Adeleke as governor.

The panel was led by Justice John Inyang Okoro. He held that Oyetola and the APC failed to prove allegations of non-accreditation of voters in 744 polling units with the BVAS and resulting in over-voting.

According to the panel, the failure of the election tribunal in Osun to consider the preliminary objections raised by Adeleke and the PDP at the trial level amounted to denial of fair hearing and rendered the entire proceeding a nullity.

The Independent National Electoral Commission had declared that Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party winner of the July 16, 2022 governorship poll in Odun. Adeleke polled 403,371 votes, to defeat then-incumbent governor Adegboyega Oyetola, of the All Progressives Congress, who got 375,027 votes.

But Oyetola challenged Adeleke’s victory at the Osun Election Tribunal.

On 27 January, the tribunal ruled against Adeleke in a judgement that declared Oyetola the rightfully elected governor based on the reports of overvoting.

The judgment sparked protests and prompted an immediate appeal from now-Governor Adeleke, who remains in office pending the results of further litigation.

But the Appeal Court upheld Adeleke’s victory, nullifying the judgement of the tribunal. The court held that the tribunal was wrong in its conclusion that that the election in some parts of the state was marred by over-voting.

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