Tribunal Dismisses Amosun’s Bid To Stop Isiaka’s Petition
Last minutes efforts by the Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun and his party, All Progressives Congress (APC) to convince the Tribunal to strike out the petition challenging their victory at the April 11, this year election were yesterday dismissed by the 3-man panel headed by Justice Henry Olusiyi.
Amosun and his party had once again, challenged the jurisdiction and competence of the Tribunal, thereby asking for the dismissal of the PDP’s petition on account of “irregularity, incompetence and lack of jurisdiction of the Honourable Tribunal to determine the petition as constituted”.
Meanwhile, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) yesterday also closed its case without calling its witness. The electoral body had listed a witness, Mr. Dickson Atiba to defend sundry allegations against the credibility of the election especially allegations of over-voting, non compliance with Electoral acts and rigging in nine local councils under contention. But counsel to the INEC, Mr. Oluwajare Ogunnaike told the Tribunal that Atiba had been transferred to Lagos and all efforts to bring him down to Abeokuta had been difficult due to his busy schedule.
Ogunnaike, on whose instance the proceeding was adjourned till yesterday informed the court that he could not get across to the witness in time who he said has been transferred outside the state.
Counsel to the Petitioners, Adetunji Oyeyipo (SAN) said he would only concede to the adjournment if Ogunnaike would undertake on the availability of the witness. Oyeyipo further told the court that the body language of the 3rd respondent was not to the effect of calling any witness adding that it was either the witness was not willing or that INEC was not eager to call him urging the court to order the third respondent to close its case.
Meanwhile, Counsel to the first Respondent (Amosun) John Olusola Baiyeshea (SAN) and George Adeniyi of the APC filed separate applications dated August dated August 3, this year seeking “an order setting aside the entire proceedings and report of the pre-hearing session on account of lack of jurisdiction of the Honourable Tribunal.
Responding, the Chairman of the three man tribunal panel, Justice Henry Olusiyi said the applications were abuse of court processes and unnecessary waste of time of the tribunal.
Olusiyi held that the applications were attempts to relitigate on matters that have been long settled by the same tribunal.