Lagos State chapter of the Action Congress of Nigeria on Monday said it was not rattled by its loss of Ikoyi/Obalende Local Development Council Development Area at the state local government election petitions tribunal.
Spokesman for the state ACN chapter, Joe Igbokwe, said in a statement that the party’s lawyers were studying the judgment of the tribunal, which last week declared that Jide Obanikoro won the October 22, 2012 and not Ade Adeniji of ACN won the poll.
“In a democratic dispensation, it is natural that after elections, there are bound to be disputations and that is why the judiciary is there to sieve the grain from the chaff. In the case of Ikoyi/Obalende LCDA, we saw the desperate efforts to claim the LCDA every means possible.
“We expected to contest against other parties and as such, we expected to either win or lose elections, which is how it is supposed to be. After what we believed was a free and fair election, our opponents who have planned another strategy, knowing their strength, went on an extensive campaign to rubbish the election and even went to the extent of mobilising thugs and urchins to cause a breach of the peace in Lagos.
“They denied that any election took place and in another breath, claimed they won the election.
“While we felt that the election was free and fair, we advised those who felt otherwise to approach the court. Thank God they did only after seeing the futility to resort to self-help and thank God that the judgment they are now celebrating was got through the same system they desperately tried to rubbish.
“Thank God, what they presented as obtained in the same election they were desperately trying to deny is the basis of the present judgment’ but we seriously object to this. We are pleased that the process in Lagos is giving room for the opposition to canvass for and win local councils, contrary to what obtains in all PDP states where the party merely awards itself all available local council seats in the name of elections and where the courts have been made annexes of PDP head offices and approve whatever the party desires.
“We have no doubt about the capacity of Lagos to midwife a free and fair democratic process in the face of the deliberate efforts of the PDP to rubbish the local councils and its electoral system for their selfish benefits.
“The present judgment, even in its flawed nature, is proof of the credibility of the electoral system in Lagos. We had 60 cases arising from the election and we have won 46 so far, lost 6 including two ordered re-runs.
“We have already won one of the re-runs and we are awaiting the rest. Lagos ACN has appealed the cases we lost at the tribunal so it is an on going process that has not been concluded,” the statement reads.