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Thursday, 16 March 2017

Court Reserves Judgment On Edo Guber Election

By Ige Olugbenga with agency report

The Court of Appeal sitting in Benin on Thursday reserved judgment indefinitely in the appeal filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate in the September 28 governorship election, Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

The appellants filed the appeal over the Edo Governorship Election Petition Tribunal’s stoppage of the recounting of ballot papers used in the said election.

The appellants in their petitions before the election tribunal, are challenging the declaration by Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of Godwin Obaseki of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as winner of the election.

They listed INEC, Obaseki and the APC as first, second and third respondents respectively in the petition.

The appellants in their pleadings before the tribunal said they would request a recounting in the open court of ballot papers used in four local government areas.

They listed the local government areas as: Egor, Akoko-Edo, Estako West and Estako East.

Judgement Served

However, the Justice Ahmed Badamasi-led three man tribunal ordered the stoppage of the recounting after three of the four local government areas were counted.

The tribunal claimed that it made the order because the petitioners’ statutory 14-day period to prove their case had lapsed.

But the petitioners, who claimed that the stoppage of the recounting would be fatal to their case, approached the Court of Appeal, seeking an order for the conclusion of the recounting.

INEC, Obaseki and APC opposed the appellants’ application and urged the court to dismiss it.


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