Nov. 9 (PREMIUM TIMES) — The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and its candidate in the October 20 governorship election in Ondo State, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, have filed a petition at the Election Petition Tribunal against the declaration of Olusegun Mimiko of the Labour Party (LP) by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as winner of the election.
The petition, which was filed at the tribunal located within the premises of the Akure High Court, contained 190 paragraphs in 403 pages.
Also, the Accord Party (AP) and its candidate, James Olawale, late Thursday filed its own petition at the tribunal.
Both parties and their candidates are seeking a similar prayer, calling for the cancellation of the October poll.
While the Accord Party, in a petition submitted to the tribunal secretary, Yusuf Musa, based its prayer on the claim that INEC omitted its logo on the ballot paper used for the election, the ACN said Mr. Mimiko was not duly elected by a majority of lawful votes.
Mr. Akeredolu said the election was invalid by reason of corrupt practices and or non-compliance with provision of the Electoral Act 2010 as amended.
The ACN legal team, made up of 20 lawyers, will be led by Akin Olujimi and Lasun Sanusi, both Senior Advocates of Nigeria.
ACN alleged that the voters register was falsified by INEC to ensure victory for Mr. Mimiko and that some named political office holders in the state connived with security agents and INEC staff to rig the election in favour of Labour Party.
Also in the petition were allegations of ballot box hijacking, ballot box snuffing, massive multiple thumbprinting of ballot papers by Labour Party agents.
The petitioners alleged that the election was marred by irregularities, non-compliance with the Electoral Act and that there were glaring violence, malpractices and allocation of votes for LP, and creation of secret unit and collation centre where the electoral fraud was perpetuated.
Furthermore the party alleged that the LP deployed cash and materials to induce voters throughout the state.
The petitioner pleaded as evidence all video clips, report of local and international observer, media, fingerprint experts, medical reports and election materials used in the conduct of the poll.
In its petition, the ACN listed 117 witnesses from all the local Government in the state except Owo local Government which it won convincingly.
Accord Party claimed that INEC omitted its logo from the ballot paper used for the election, contrary to the provisions of the Electoral Act 2010.
The petitioners insisted that INEC sent three of its officials to monitor its primary held on August 1, 2012 but still excluded its candidate’s name from the list of contestants.
The Accord Party prayed the tribunal to order INEC to conduct fresh election that would allow Mr. Olawale to participate.