The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and its candidate Oluwarotimi Akeredolu have challenged the results of the October 20 governorship election in Ondo State at the state Election Petition Tribunal.
This is however at variance with the declaration of the National Chairman of the party Chief Bisi Akande who said that the party has put the election behind it. Also at the time of filing in this report the Peoples Democratic Party PDP and its candidate Chief Olusola Oke are still perfecting papers to also approach the tribunal.
Some eminent lawyers according to sources within the PDP do not want to leave any loop hole in the papers to be presented to the tribunal. Leaders of the party are still keeping watch at the premises of the state High Court which doubles as the office the Election Petition Tribunal.
Also, Accord Party’s governorship candidate, Mr James Olawale has filed a petition at the election tribunal, seeking to nullify the re-election of Governor Olusegun Mimiko. The ACN filed a 190 paragraph, 403 pages petition against Independent National Electoral Commission INEC, Dr Rahman Olusegun Mimiko and Labour party LP.
ACN prayed for the nullification of October 20 poll on the basis that Dr Mimiko was not duly elected by a majority of lawful votes, that the election is invalid by reason of corrupt practices and or non-compliance with provision of the electoral Act.
The petition was filed by Twenty Senior lawyers who include Chief Akin Olujimi SAN, Lasun Sanusi SAN, Wole Aina Edward Odugbesan, Kola Olawoye, Charles Titiloye, Victor Olatoyegun, Micheal Lana Esq. The party alleged that the voters register was falsified by INEC to ensure victory of Dr Mimiko.
It was further alleged in the Petition that some named Political office holder in Ondo state connived with security agents and INEC staff to rig the poll in favour of Labour party. The ACN further in the petition alleged ballot hijacking, ballot box snuffing, massive multiple thumb printing of Ballot papers by Labour party agents.
The petitioners alleged that the election was marred with irregularities, non compliance with electoral act and there was glaring violence, malpractices and allocation of votes for LP, and creation of secret Unit and Collation centre where the electoral fraud was perpetuated. It said that the LP deployed cash and materials to induce voters throughout the state.
The petitioner pleaded all video clips, report of local and international observer, media, fingerprint experts, medical reports and election materials used in the conduct of the poll. ACN have listed 117 witnesses from all the local Government in the state except Owo local Government which it won convincingly.
Meanwhile, the Accord Party in its petition dated 8 Nov, 2012 and submitted to the tribunal’s secretary, Mr Yusuf Musa claimed that INEC omitted its log on d ballot paper used for the Oct 20 governorship poll in the state. This according to the party is contrary to the 2010 Electoral Act.
The petitioners insisted that INEC sent three of its officials to monitor its primary held on the first of August, 2012 but still exclude its candidate’s name from the list of contestants. The Accord party prayed d tribunal to order INEC to conduct fresh poll that would allow Mr Olawale to participate.