The Ondo PDC guber candidate had filed a petition challenging Olusegun Mimiko’s victory
The Gubernatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Change, PDC, in the October 20 governorship election in Ondo State, Femi Omotunsi, has withdrawn his petition challenging the victory of Governor Olusegun Mimiko.
The petitioner did not give any reason for the withdrawal.
The counsel to the PDC, Yinka Orokoto, unaware of his client’s withdrawal from the case, distanced himself from the application.
The Tribunal granted the counsel leave to remove himself from the suit.
Ruling on the motion for the withdrawal, the Election Petition Tribunal’s Chairman, Andovar Kaka’an, said though both the petitioner and his counsel were not in court, the motion duly signed was explicit enough to know the intention of the petitioner to withdrawal his petition.
The tribunal, therefore, struck out the petition.
This has reduced the number of petitions to four.
The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, Accord Party, AP, Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, are the petitioners left at the tribunal.
Meanwhile the tribunal has acceded to the request by the counsels of all the four political parties by consolidating the four petitions. The tribunal said the petitions will be treated as one and tried at the same time during the same proceedings.
Also, the tribunal consolidated all pending applications slated for pre-hearing session before it.
The Tribunal ruled that all the applications and objections will be heard on Tuesday January 22, and adjourned further sitting till that day.
Three of the governorship who participated in October guber poll in Ondo State, alongside their running mates, were present at Thursday’s sitting.
They are Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, and his running mate Paul Akintelure of ACN; Olusola Oke and Saka Lawal of PDP; and Olusoji Ehinlawo of CPC.
Accord Party was represented by its acting Chairman, Olarewaju Olaniyan.
The 1st Respondent and current governor, Olusegun Mimiko of the Labour Party, was, absent from the Tribunal.
The court had many counsels in attendance, hence a lot of them had to stand up throughout the sitting.
The Tribunal promised to look into the matter to ensure that all counsels have a place to sit on the next adjourned date.
The council also agreed that all pending motions must have been served and be replied before January 22, which is the resumed sitting date for pre-hearing.
The tribunal has also granted the PDP its request to inspect all electoral materials both used and unused. The order is to be carried out in two days and will be served on INEC alongside other parties.
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