Court annuls Ondo state 2016 April local government elections after one year

After one year after the Ondo State, April 2016 local government election, which saw PDP winning all the 18 local government councils.an  Akure High Court on Friday annulled the election , citing the omission of the logo and exclusion of the People’s Redemption Party, PRP, from the election.

The case was presided by Justice Adesola Sodiq, who declared the election null and void, also called for fresh elections.

The PRP had on March 2016, filed an originating summons to compel the Ondo State Independent Electoral Commission, ODIEC, to issue it form 001 and other documents to enable it make entries for its participation in the election.

But the ODIEC had disqualified the party on the grounds that INEC had deregistered it.

PRP was later allowed to participate in the election without its logo, after it submitted documents it had appealed the decision of INEC.

Following the plans by the new administration of Rotimi Akeredolu to dissolve the local councils who are all of the People’s Democratic Party,PDP, Segun Ogodo recently approached the court on behalf of the state legal adviser of the PRP, asking it to annul the election chiefly because the party was shut out of the election.

The National Chairman of PRP, Balarabe Musa, has disowned Mr. Ogodo, saying he was not acting on behalf of the party.

Efforts by Mr. Musa and his lawyer, Femi Aborisade, to file an application to the effect that Mr. Ogodo was not acting on behalf of the party was rebuffed by the judge.

The PRP representatives and their lawyers! however, stormed out of the court upset by the judge’s refusal and vowed to proceed on appeal.

Also, an application by the local council chairmen and the PDP to be joined in the suit was also rejected by the judge, who declared that the application was late.

According to him, the application was an attempt to arrest his judgment.

Justice Sodiq said the facts before him showed that the PRP did not participate in the election.

Mr. Ogodo, while later reacting to the judgment, said it was a victory for democracy and an end to political impunity.

He explained that the arguments that the PRP participated in the election was untrue, because the PRP which participated in the election was not the authentic one.

He said Mr. Musa and his lawyer had no locus stand on the matter, having sold out to the PDP.

The council chairmen had preempted the new governor when in January this year they secured a judgment of the state high court restraining the governor from dissolving them.

Olusola Oke, counsel to the council chairmen, however, declined comments on the judgment.

Source : ( Premium Times )

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