Wednesday, April 16, 2014

More witnesses testify for Akeredolu at Ondo election tribunal

Published:

The tribunal is sitting in Ondo State, South West Nigeria.

More witnesses appeared at the Ondo state Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Akure, the Ondo State capital for the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, and its governorship candidate, Rotimi Akeredolu.

The ACN and Mr. Akeredolu are contesting the result of the last governorship election in the state declared in favour of Olusegun Mimiko of the Labour Party, LP.

The witnesses were led in evidence by the ACN counsel, Lasun Sanusi, and cross-examined by respondents’ counsels, Abiodun Owonikoko and Ozaze Uzzi.

During cross-examination, Adewale Oketade who is from Gberinlegi unit, ward 8 in Ile-Oluji/Oke-igbo local government gave evidence of over-voting.

He also alleged that the former caretaker chairman in the local government, Niran Akinniyi, hosted INEC officers and some police officers in his residence before they resumed at their respective polling units on the day of the election.

Another witness, Samson Fadoye ,70, claimed that in Alarere unit, ward 10 Ile-oluji, the votes declared by the electoral body in that unit were not valid.

In Akoko South East, Isua, a witness, Timothy Korede, alleged that voters list was inflated with 3,077 voters.

He said the state Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, Akin Orebiyi, had during the stakeholders meeting in Akure explained that 2011 voters register would be used for the October 20, 2012 election, but noted that strange names and photographs were found in voters register in the local government.

Another witness, Akinyemi John, said voters register used in St. Joseph Maternity Unit 5 in Isua-Akoko was inflated.

He added that the register contained new names and photographs of about 2,400 voters which were not in the authentic voter’s register.

In Akure South, an ACN witness, Fasua Banji, said that the voter’s register in ward 10 was also inflated and that strange and new names that were not contained in the 2011 voters register were introduced.

Earlier on Thursday, nine witness after taking oaths before the court were examined by Lasun Sanusi, the counsel to ACN and its candidate, Rotimi Akeredolu.

They all identified and adopted their written statements on the oath they swore to last year after which the respondents counsel cross-examined the witnesses as ordered by the tribunal chairman, Justice Andovar Kaka’n.

During the cross-examination, witnesses were asked questions bordering on their written statements by the counsel to Labour Party, LP, John Bayesea; that of Mr. Mimiko, Adebayo Adelodun; and INEC, Osaze Uzzi

A witness, Ogunlade Oluwole, who voted at Unit 009, Alayere ward in Akure North Local Government during the October 20 poll alleged inflation of votes in some polling booths in the ward.

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