TRIBUNAL UPDATE: Osun Tribunal Adjourns For Adoption Of Written Addresses

scales-of-justiceThe Election Petitions Tribunal hearing matters arising from Osun State governorship election has adjourned till January 28 for adoption of written addresses.

The Counsel for the All Progressives Congress, Mr. Bashiru Ajibola, had told the panel at the resumed hearing on Monday that the second respondent (APC) had decided to close their defence.

Ajibola told the panel that the petitioner, Senator Iyiola Omisore of the Peoples Democratic Party, had no case.

The Independent National Electoral Commission, which is the third respondent in the case, also opened its case and closed it the same day.

The counsel for INEC, Mr. Ayotunde Ogunleye, had tendered certified true copies of form EC8E which is the final result and declaration form, permanent voter cards distribution list and the certificate of the list.

Counsel for the first respondent, Mr. Wale Afolabi, who is also the counsel to the APC, did not raise any objection to the admissibility of the documents. However, the petitioner’s counsel, Mr. Nathaniel Oke (SAN), however, objected to the admissibility of the document.

He argued that the certificate of the PVCs distribution list should be rejected because it was not front-loaded.

The tribunal admitted the document.

He said, “We apply to close our case upon the evaluation of the case made out by the petitioner, coupled with evidence we have extracted from the witnesses called so far by other respondents and the petitioner.”

Ogunleye told the panel that the third respondent did not need oral evidence since virtually all the document tendered by parties in the case emanated from the INEC.

The strike action embarked upon by the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria had almost stalled the proceedings as the union withdrew their members who are interpreters and bailiffs.

The striking workers had earlier locked the gates to the court premises and prevented lawyers and others from going inside.

However, the workers eventually allowed lawyers and others who had businesses in the court to gain entry.

The JUSUN in the state said that they were ready to go on with the strike action until state governors complied with the judgement of the Federal High Court delivered on January 13, 2014, according to all the terms contained in the Memorandum of Understanding.