ADVERTISEMENT

Ajaka vs Ododo: Tribunal to decide winner of Kogi guber polls Monday, May 27

Usman Ododo, through his Counsel, Daudu, urged the tribunal to reject the petition of Murtala Ajaka.

Murtala Ajaka and Usman Ododo. [Facebook]

The petition challenges the declaration of Usman Ododo as the winner of the November 11 Kogi state governorship election.

The tribunal, led by Justice Ado Birnin-Kudu and consisting of a three-member panel, announced the date on Thursday in Abuja.

The message was communicated to the parties’ counsel through its secretary, David Mike, and shared with the press.

ADVERTISEMENT

In the November 11, 2023, off-cycle election, Ododo of the All Progressive Congress (APC) won, significantly defeating Ajaka of the SDP. Unhappy with the election results, Ajaka filed a petition with the tribunal to contest Ododo’s victory.

The case, which began in December 2023, reached a crucial point on May 13 when the Social Democratic Party (SDP), its candidate Ajaka, the All Progressives Congress (APC), its candidate Ododo, and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) presented their final written arguments. Following this, the tribunal reserved its judgment on the petition.

INEC, Ododo, and the APC, through their lawyers—Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), Joseph Daudu (SAN), and Emmanuel Ukala (SAN), respectively—requested the tribunal to dismiss the petition filed by Ajaka and the SDP, arguing that it was both incompetent and without merit.

Chief Agabi, representing INEC, argued that the petition was baseless and urged the tribunal to strike it out or dismiss it entirely.

ADVERTISEMENT

“It is our humble submission that your work in the determination of this petition is simplified in recent judgments by the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court,” he said, according to the Nigerian Tribune.

He contended that the Appeal Court had ruled that if a petition’s grounds are inconsistent and do not align with the requested reliefs, it should be dismissed.

He further argued that the petitioner’s evidence was severely lacking, referencing a Supreme Court ruling in the case of Tonye Cole against INEC.

The senior lawyer, describing the case as baseless, requested the tribunal strike out or dismiss the petition as invalid.

Ododo, through his Counsel, Daudu, also urged the tribunal to reject the petition entirely.

ADVERTISEMENT

In his elaboration, he argued that the petition was filed after the legal deadline and requested the tribunal to dismiss the forgery allegations against his client, stating it was a pre-election issue already decided by the apex court in Gbagi’s case against INEC.

Daudu also argued that Section 137 of the Electoral Act, cited by the petitioners regarding allegations of over-voting, did not apply to this case.

Ukala, representing APC, supported Daudu’s argument and urged the court to dismiss the petition because it lacked merit.

Conversely, Ajaka’s lawyer, Pius Akubo (SAN), urged the tribunal to disregard the respondents’ arguments and uphold their petition.

ADVERTISEMENT

He disagreed with Daudu’s claim that their petition was filed late and argued that the respondents’ witness confirmed it was filed on December 2, 2023.

JOIN OUR PULSE COMMUNITY!

Unblock notifications in browser settings.
ADVERTISEMENT

Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or:

Email: eyewitness@pulse.ng

Recommended articles

Kanu committed no crime, Niger Delta communities ask Tinubu to release IPOB leader

Kanu committed no crime, Niger Delta communities ask Tinubu to release IPOB leader

Mayhem in Ebonyi community as youths burn down man's house after cleric's revelation

Mayhem in Ebonyi community as youths burn down man's house after cleric's revelation

Lawmakers want urgent purchase of new aircraft for Tinubu, Shettima to avoid mishap

Lawmakers want urgent purchase of new aircraft for Tinubu, Shettima to avoid mishap

Gov Lawal begins payment of ₦30k minimum wage, June salary to Zamfara workers

Gov Lawal begins payment of ₦30k minimum wage, June salary to Zamfara workers

NACHON urges Nigerian pilgrims to avoid direct sunlight over health risks

NACHON urges Nigerian pilgrims to avoid direct sunlight over health risks

Customs boss, Adeniyi reacts to age falsification report

Customs boss, Adeniyi reacts to age falsification report

Customs intercepts ₦4bn illicit drugs at Tin Can Island Port

Customs intercepts ₦4bn illicit drugs at Tin Can Island Port

Your visit is a recognition of what stage we are, Tinubu tells FBI Director

Your visit is a recognition of what stage we are, Tinubu tells FBI Director

Flood: Lagos govt demolishes OPC shrines, gates, fences, security post in Okota

Flood: Lagos govt demolishes OPC shrines, gates, fences, security post in Okota

Pulse Sports

Victor Osimhen's future in the balance: Premier League or Saudi Pro League?

Victor Osimhen's future in the balance: Premier League or Saudi Pro League?

FIFA Rankings: Nigeria ahead of Ghana& South Africa, remain best team in the continent

FIFA Rankings: Nigeria ahead of Ghana& South Africa, remain best team in the continent

'Sack him now' - Reactions as Finidi George fails to inspire Super Eagles against Benin

'Sack him now' - Reactions as Finidi George fails to inspire Super Eagles against Benin

All for women? Gabby Thomas and other female athletes accused of poor sportsmanship to Thompson-Herah

All for women? Gabby Thomas and other female athletes accused of poor sportsmanship to Thompson-Herah

Super Eagles: Nigeria are becoming World Cup qualifying no-hopers

Super Eagles: Nigeria are becoming World Cup qualifying no-hopers

NPFL Standings: What the latest title race twist means after the abandoned Rangers vs Enyimba derby

NPFL Standings: What the latest title race twist means after the abandoned Rangers vs Enyimba derby

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT