Reactions have continued to trail the nullification of the election of Osun State Governor, Ademola Adeleke of People’s Democratic Party, PDP.
Recall that the Osun State Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Osogbo on Friday ruled that the the declaration of Adeleke as the duly elected governor of the state was null and void.
The Chairman of the three-member panel, Justice Tertsea Kume, who read the judgement, said the July 16, 2022 Governorship Election was not conducted in compliance with the Electoral Act.
Mr Kume said that there was indeed over voting in 744 polling units in the Local Government Areas, LGAs, of the state.
He said that it was the duty of the tribunal to deduct the valid votes cast from the over-voting.
He said that after the deduction of valid votes scored by the candidates from the observed over-voting, Gboyega Oyetola of APC polled 314,931, while Adeleke polled 290,266 votes.
Reacting to the judgment, the presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, Atiku Abubakar, insisted that the people of Osun State “overwhelmingly voted for the Peoples Democratic Party and gave their mandate to” Adeleke.
He expressed optimism that the PDP would reclaim its mandate at the end.
In a series of tweets, Atiku wrote: “On today’s verdict of the Election Petition Tribunal in Osun State, I stand in solidarity with the good people of Osun State who overwhelmingly voted for the Peoples Democratic Party and gave their mandate to His Excellency Governor Ademola Adeleke, @AAdeleke_01.
“What has happened at the tribunal today is a phase in the struggle to liberate Osun State, and I am sure that at the conclusion of the whole process, the people shall be victorious.
“I, therefore, call on the people of Osun to continue to have faith in their governor elected into office on the popular ballot.
This light that has shone on Osun shall never go dim.”
Earlier, Governor Adelek rejected the judgment, describing it as “a miscarriage of justice”.
In a statement issued to newsmen by his spokesperson, Olawale Rasheed, he vowed to appeal the judgment.
Mr Rasheed faulted the tribunal’s decision on over-voting in favour of Mr Oyetola, describing it as “an unfair interpretation against the will of a majority of voters.
“I call on our people to remain calm.
“We will appeal the judgement and are sure justice will be done.
“Let our people be reassured that we will do everything possible to retain this widely acclaimed mandate,” Mr Rasheed said.