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By: Ade Adeleke
The 2019 National and State Houses of Assembly elections Tribunal Court sitting in Akure on Tuesday said it has received four petitions from dissatisfied candidates in Ondo state
The Secretary of the Tribunal, Mr Livinus Ugwu stated this while speaking with newsmen in Akure.
He said the first petition received was from a journalist, Mr Donald Ojogo of the All Progressives Congress APC challenging the declaration of Mr Kolade Akinjo sponsored by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP as the winner of the Ilaje/Eseodo Federal Constituency in the February 23rd General elections.
Counsel to the petitioner, Mr Isaacs Kekemeke hinged the petition on the ground that the declaration violate 2019 regulations and guidelines for the conduct of elections and asked the court to declare the election inconclusive and called for supplementary election in the constituency.
In another petition , Mr Albert Akintoye of the APC challenged the declaration of Mr Ikengbolu Gboluga of the PDP as member representing Okitipupa/Irele Federal Constituency on ground that he gathered the majority of the lawful votes cast in the election but was manipulated by INEC in favour of the PDP.
Counsel to the petitioner, Mr Yinka Orokoto in his prayers sought an order setting aside the certificate of return issued by INEC to Mr Gboluga and declare Mr Akintoye as member-elect for the constituency.
Also in another petition, Mr Abayomi Akinfemiwa of the PDP challenged the declaration of Mr Mayowa Akinfolarin of the APC as member-elect for Ileoluji/Okeigbo/Odigbo Federal Constituency.
The petitioner through his counsel, Mr Olumide Ogunja submitted that election in some of the wards such as Odigbo, Ore, oniparaga and Koseru were characterized by irregularities against electoral law 2011 as amended.
Mr Ogunja contends that Mr Akinfemiwa having scored highest number of lawful votes ought to have been returned and should be returned as member-elect representing the Constituency.
In the fourth petition, the Mega Party of Nigeria, MPN is challenging the declaration of Senator Ajayi Boroffice as Senator-elect for the Ondo North Senatorial district in the National Assembly election.
Counsel to the MPN, Mr Remi Olatubora, submitted that INEC erred by unlawfully excluded the Mega Party of Nigeria from the ballot list and called for Nullification of the election and order for fresh election in the district.
The Tribunal headed by Justice Nuhu Adi and has as members Justices V.U. Okorie and K.M. Alabo is yet to have a formal sitting.
Meanwhile the Tribunal Secretary, Mr Ugwu noted that the court has granted interlocutory applications for an order directing INEC to present for inspection materials used for the conduct of the elections and to make certified true copies available to the petitioners.