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Kogi West: Tribunal reserves judgement in Melaye’s petition

The Kogi State National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal, sitting in Abuja, has reserved its judgment in the petition filed by Senator Dino Melaye and his Party, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, against the victory of Senator Smart Adeyemi of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the November 30th, 2019 Kogi West Senatorial election.

Senator Melaye and dragged Senator Adeyemi before the tribunal, alleging irregularities in the conduct of the election.

According to him, despite the irregularities, the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, declared Senator Adeyemi, winner of the election.

At the sitting of the tribunal yesterday, parties adopted their final written addresses.

In his written address, counsel to Senator Adeyemi, Dr. Otitoju Oladapo, urge the tribunal to dismiss the petition for lacking in merit and substance.

According to him, the petitioner failed to prove the petition by bringing a credible witness to prove it case.

Dr. Otitoju said, ”VWhen a witness lies before the court, it becomes unreliable and the evidence the counsel to the petitioners brought before the tribunal emanated from his table and it can not stand as evidence before your Lordships.

”I urge your Lordships to discountenance the paragraph 3.00 to 5.0, because they amount to re-argument which the court forbid. Having satisfied the law the 2nd respondents (Senator Adeyemi) was declared the winner and it has not been disprove by any witness and on this, I pray your Lordships to dismiss the petition”.

In his argument, Counsel to Senator Melaye, Professor Wahab Egbewole, told the tribunal to upheld his petition and set aside the election that brought in Senator Adeyemi as a senator in the Senate.

According to him, the election was marred by irregularities and was conducted in flagrant breach of the electoral act.

He said he was able to prove beyond g reasonable doubt that the election did not conform with the laws guiding elections in the country.

He said all the witnesses of the petitioners were able to prove that the election was everything but free and fair.

Also, INEC and the APC called on the tribunal to dismissed the petition and uphold the election of the 2nd defendant.

After listening to the arguments of counsel in the matter, the tribunal Chairman, Justice Isa Sambo reserved the petition for judgment.

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