Tribunal Decides Gbajabiamila’s Fate Sept 28

The Lagos State National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal has fixed September 28, 2015 to give judgment in a petition challenging the victory of the All Progressives Congress lawmaker representing Surulere Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila.

Gbajamilama, who is now the Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, had been declared the winner of the March 28, 2015 poll by the Independent National Electoral Commission after polling 21, 715 votes.

But his victory is being challenged by the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the said election, Mr. Tony Ashikodi, who polled 14, 550 votes.

Ashikodi alleged irregularities and a breach of the guidelines set out by the Independent National Electoral Commission for the conduct of the election.

He is seeking a prayer nullifying Gbajabiamila’s victory, as well as an order for the conduct of a fresh election, arguing that Gbajabiamila did not score the highest number of valid votes as declared by INEC.

The Justice Justice C.U Anwuka-led tribunal adjourned for judgment on Wednesday after counsel for the parties have adopted their final written addresses and canvassed summary arguments.

Ashikodi’s counsel, Kalu Onuah, said the tribunal was bound to declare as null and void the declaration by INEC that Gbajabiamila won the election, in compliance with Section 53(2) Electoral Act, 2010 which mandated the nullification of any election where the number of votes cast exceeded the number of registered voters.

Onuah argued further that a situation where the result sheets were not signed and counter-signed by the agents of the candidates at the polling units, would occasion the nullification of the result pursuant to Section 63, 71 and 74 of the Electoral Act.

Opposing him, however, counsel for Gbajabiamila and APC, Omotay‎o Olatunbosun and T.N Olaitan, said the petitioner’s counsel misconceived the law and misrepresented the facts.

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