Ilaka Appeals Case Closure At Election Tribunal | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Ilaka Appeals Case Closure At Election Tribunal

Posted: Sep 21, 2015 at 12:17 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Oladele Ogunsola Ibadan

Alleging premature closure of his case at the on-going hearing of the petition arising from the National Assembly election held on the 28th March, this year, the Accord Senatorial candidate for Oyo Central Senatorial District in the election, Oyebisi Ilaka has dragged the Election Petition Tribunal to the Appeal. Court in Ibadan.

The National and State House of Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal led by J.G. Abundaga sitting at the Iyaganku, Ibadan High Court premises had on the 14th of last month closed Ilaka’s case in its ruling which the petitioner described as an attempt to prevent him from concluding his presentation.

It would be recalled that Ilaka had dragged Monsurat Sunmonu, her party, All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) before the tribunal, challenging the return of Sunmonu as the winner of the election as declared by INEC.

Out of the 11 local government council areas the Senatorial District is composed of, Ilaka is challenging the election results in seven of the local government areas.

Ilaka, in his petition before the tribunal, is asking that he be declared the winner of the election, having scored the highest number of lawful votes or in the alternative order a rerun.

In the notice of Appeal filed by his counsel, Biodun Abdu-Raheem, Ilaka is praying the Appeal Court, Ibadan Judicial Division, to set aside the ruling of the tribunal and allow him to conclude his case.

The appeal has five grounds, among which is, that the tribunal erroneously applied the principles guiding its powers to suo –motu (voluntarily) close the Appellant’s case.

During the trial, the Appellant had secured an order of the tribunal to inspect and get Certified True Copies (CTC) of the electoral documents used in the election to maintain his petition, an order which the INEC partially complied with.

Ilaka’s counsel, who was not satisfied filed a subpoena dated July 9, which caused the appearance of an officer of INEC who brought scanty documents to the tribunal and pleaded for more time to bring the remaining and following which the matter was adjourned.