Ondo election tribunal concludes pre-trial session

The ACN is challenging Mr. Mimiko’s victory in court.

The Ondo State Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Akure, the state capital has ended its pre-trial session.

The tribunal, however, called on parties to be mindful of the limited time for the petitions.

The tribunal at the last sitting threatened not to entertain any motion or application in view of the time limit.

But at the resumed hearing, counsel to Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, and its Governorship Candidate, Lasun Sanusi, brought a motion before the tribunal seeking to bring in a report of the inspection exercise carried out at the Independent National Electoral Commission office in Akure.

This was objected by counsel to Governor Olusegun Mimiko, who said he needed time to study the motion. He specifically urged the tribunal to give him seven days to study and reply the motion.

In his ruling, the Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Aondvar Kaka’n ordered the Governor’s counsel to file its reply to the motion.

In order to fast track the hearing, the tribunal has also allocated time to the parties before it.

The petitioners will have eight days to call their witnesses and prove their case while the respondents will have five days each.

The tribunal will also have 10 days for submission of addresses and judgement.

Meanwhile, Mr. Sanusi pleaded for an adjournment till the respondents respond to his motion before the proper hearing begins.

Counsel to the respondents, who opposed the motion for adjournment, said Mr. Sanusi did not give any good reason for the sitting to be adjourned.

Mr. Kaka’n, in his ruling, said two days will be deducted from the days allocated to Mr. Akeredolu and the ACN’s petitions saying the proper hearing would start immediately.

The tribunal chairman said it is sad that the petitioners, who are supposed to be fast tracking the tribunal sitting, are blocking the progress of the petitions.

He subsequently adjourned the next sitting to February 19.


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