The Supreme Court has affirmed Governor Ademola Adeleke of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) as the winner of the July 16, 2022, Osun State Gubernatorial Election.
Delivering judgment on Tuesday, a five-member panel of the apex court held that the court of appeal correctly reinstated Adeleke as governor.
The apex court, in its lead judgement delivered by Justice Emmanuel Agim, dismissed an appeal that was lodged against Adeleke’s election victory by the former governor of the state, Adegboyega Oyetola, who was the gubernatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC.
It held that though Oyetola alleged that Adeleke won through over-voting that occurred in 774 polling units in the state, he, however, failed to produce any Bimodal Voters Accreditation System, BVAS, a machine that was used in any of the polling units to prove his allegation.
“It is glaring that the Appellant did not provide in evidence, any BVAS, but sought to prove over-voting by means of a report of examination of INEC’s database or backend server.”
The apex court held that since it was not in dispute that the BVAS contain a record of accredited voters, “it is, therefore, the only direct and primary record of voters accredited at polling units on election day”.
It held that nothing in either Section 47 of the Electoral Act 2022 or Regulations 18- 23 of the INEC’s Regulations, made it mandatory for Presiding Officers in an election to transmit by BVAS, the number of accredited voters in each polling unit to the backend server.
It dismissed evidence of purported expert witnesses that testified in Oyetola’s favour.
It will be recalled that the Osun State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal had on January 27, in a split decision, voided the declaration of Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, as the winner of the gubernatorial election.Follow us on social media