Yinka Kolawole in Osogbo
The Osun State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal has admitted in evidence the Certified True Copies (CTC) of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) reports showing the over-voting in favour of Senator Ademola Adeleke in the July 16 governorship election in the state.
The tribunal, led by Justice Tertsea Kume, also admitted in evidence Adeleke’s Diploma certificate from Penn Foster High School, B.Sc certificate from Atlanta Metropolitan State College, Letter of Attestation dated May 22, 2016, from Ede Muslim High School, NYSC Certificate of Exception and some other documents as exhibits.
Also admitted are forms EC8As, for Olorunda, Obokun and Ila Local Government Areas; forms EC8Bs, which are results of the wards, and forms EC8Cs- the results of each of the 10 local government areas being challenged-forms EC8D which is the summary of the overall result; EC8Es the declaration of the result and form EC9.
The state Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, and the All Progressives Congress (APC) are challenging the declaration of Adeleke by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as the winner of the election in 10 local government areas, just as it is also challenging his qualification to stand for the election.
At the resumed hearing of the petition yesterday, counsel for Oyetola, Dr. Saka Layoonu (SAN), tendered additional documentary evidence, including the CTC of the much celebrated BVAS reports, which indicated that the number of accredited voters is lower than the total number of votes cast in the said councils.
Layoonu, while formally tendering the documents, informed the court that the evidence had been jointly cross-checked by both parties and the secretariat of the tribunal and confirmed to be accurate.
Respondents’ counsel, Jamiu Olabode (INEC), Niyi Owolade (Adeleke), and Nathaniel Oke, (PDP), objected to the admissibility of the documents and indicated that they would canvass arguments in the final written addresses.
The tribunal, in its ruling admitted the documents in evidence, marked them as exhibits and adjourned till November 16.
Earlier, the PDP counsel, Oke raised the alarm before the court, alleging that the media reports being circulated were not actually what transpired in court, and said: “My Lords, we are not comfortable with the reports of proceedings by pressmen in this court.”
But the tribunal chairman, while responding, asked for evidence, hard facts to that effect.
The panel further said it was unaware of any inaccurate reportage of its proceedings, saying: “We can’t comment on what we don’t know, unless you come up with hard facts. We are not here for social media commentaries.”