Incumbent Governor and Candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Adegboyega Oyetola on the 5th August 202 submitted a petition, challenging the result of the just concluded gubernatorial election in Osun State, thereby seeking the tribunal in Osogbo to nullify the election of the Peoples Democracy Party, Ademola Adeleke. on the ground of fraught with certain irregularities. He also claimed that Adeleke ought not to have been declared winner as he was not qualified to have contested the election in the first place, having submitted a forged certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission.
A member of Oyetola’s legal team, Kunle Adegoke (SAN), said the governor has assembled 50 lawyers including 10 Senior Advocates of Nigeria, listing 13 grounds on which premises Adeleke should be disqualified. Other key members of the legal team included Prince Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), Chief Akin Olujumi (SAN), Prince Biodun Layonu (SAN/, and Muritala Abdulrasheed (SAN).
The legal team, he said, has established by the petition that the election in those 749 polling units across 10 Local Governments in Osun State was characterized by irregularities pertaining to overvoting.
“The Petitioners hereby plead and shall rely on Form EC8D (being the summary of collation of results) and Form EC8E (being the declaration of result) issued by the 1st Respondent, not only to show the recorded scores but also to demonstrate the invalidity of the scores recorded thereon,” the petition reads.
“The Petitioners plead and shall also rely on the Reports and evidence by their Experts, including Statisticians, Forensic Examiners, and other witnesses, as well as the Report of Inspection and Production of Materials granted to the Petitioners by this Honourable Tribunal.
“The 2nd Respondent was, at the time of the election, not qualified to contest the election. The Petitioners aver that the 2nd Respondent did not possess the educational qualification to contest the election to the office of Governor of Osun State held on Saturday, 16th July 2022 conducted by the 1st Respondent.
“The Petitioners contend that the 2nd Respondent was, at the material time, not qualified to contest election to the office of the Governor of Osun State for having presented forged certificates to the 1st Respondent. The Petitioners say that the Diploma Certificate of Penn Foster High School purportedly awarded on the 16th day of July 2021 and submitted by the 2nd Respondent along with his Form EC9 to the 1st Respondent, was forged.
“The Petitioners further say that the Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice purportedly awarded by Atlanta Metropolitan State College and submitted by the 2nd Respondent along with his Form EC9 to the 1st Respondent, was forged. The Petitioners further plead that the 2nd Respondent had also previously 2018 submitted a forged certificate to the 1st Respondent herein along with his Form C.F.001.
“The Petitioners say that in an attempt to meet the educational qualification requirement to contest the governorship election in Osun State scheduled for the 16th day of July 2022, The 2nd Respondent submitted to the 1st Respondent a Form EC 9 – Affidavit in Support of Personal Particulars – whereof in Column C which required him to state the schools he attended beginning with Primary School and educational qualifications with dates, he indicated that he attended Muslim Grammar Sch. Ede between 1976 – 1981 without stating what qualification he obtained, if any, from that School.
“The 2nd Respondent did not indicate which Primary School he attended if any, and what qualifications, if any, he obtained therefrom. In the said Form EC 9, the 2nd Respondent indicated that he attended Penn Foster High School whereat he purportedly obtained a High School Diploma in 2021; the 2nd Respondent also indicated in the said Column Cof his form EC9 – Affidavit in Support of Personal Particulars – that he obtained B.Sc. in Criminal Justice from Atlanta Metropolitan State College in 2021. The Petitioners shall rely on a certified true copy of the said Form EC 9 – Affidavit in Support of Personal Particulars – filled and submitted by the 2nd Respondent to the 1st Respondent.”
Meanwhile, Adeleke has responded to the news of his victory being challenged by Oyetola, revealing that he is ready to go to any length to prove his victory was not ill-gotten. Adeleke said: “This divine victory cannot be stolen through the backdoor.
“I urge the good people of Osun who voted massively to reject bad governance to remain calm. “We are doing the needful to defend their mandate. “We will do all within our powers to ensure judicial validation of our victory as this is an election globally certified as a great advancement in electoral transparency and integrity. “We also want to reaffirm our faith in the judiciary as a bastion of hope and justice. “We have unshakeable trust in God that this election petition shall end in another landmark victory for us and the resilient people of Osun.’’