INEC has raised 44 grounds of appeal against the judgement of the tribunal.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has asked the Court of Appeal to reverse the judgement of the Osun Governorship Election Petition Tribunal which nullified the declaration of Ademola Adeleke as the winner of the 16 July governorship election.
The tribunal, in the majority judgement read by its chairperson, Tertsea Kume, ordered INEC to withdraw the certificate of return from Mr Adeleke and issue it to former governor Gboyega Oyetola.
It said evidence before it showed that the election was not held in compliance with the 2022 Electoral Act.
But in a notice of appeal signed by its counsel, Paul Ananaba, the electoral body argued that the judgement contained an “error in law.”
The certified true copy of the notice of appeal, a copy of which was obtained by our reporter, was dated 8 February.
In it, INEC is asking the appellate court to set the whole decision of the tribunal aside and order the dismissal of the petition for “want of competence and jurisdiction.”
The appellant also wants the court to dismiss the petition because it “lacks merit with substantial cost.”
“The judgement of the lower Tribunal is against the weight of evidence,” the appellant stated in the notice.
The reliefs sought by INEC from the court are:
“Allow the Appeal;
“AN ORDER setting aside the whole decision of the trial Tribunal;
“An Order dismissing and/or striking out the Petition for want of competence and jurisdiction; and
“An Order dismissing the Petition of the 1 and 2nd Respondents in d. this Appeal as lacking in merit with substantial cost.”
INEC raised 44 grounds of appeal in the notice.
PDP commends INEC
Meanwhile, the Caretaker Chairman of the PDP in Osun State, Akindele Adekunle, has commended INEC for appealing the judgement.
Mr Adekunle said in a statement on Wednesday:
“It is so bad that the lies that INEC will not appeal the scandalous judgement that tried to discredit BVAS machines in our elections emanated from APC lawyers, making it clear that they know the evil they perpetrated at the Tribunal can not stand,” he added.
“While the falsehood lasted, we chose not to respond because we are convinced that INEC knows better and being aware of the implication of ignoring the attack on the BVAS machines as the decision of Justice Kume did at the Tribunal, INEC has toed the right path by appealing the “Buga judgment” because if such is sustained, what will happen will be candidates who lost elections will manipulate server reports and presenting same to a judge to steal the election from the actual winner.”