The Osun State Governorship Election Tribunal has ruled that the supplementary election conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, on September 27, 2018 in the state is illegal, null and void.
The election was a 2-way race between Ademola Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and Gboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress, APC, who was declared winner by INEC.
In its ruling delivered by Justice Peter Obi, the three-member panel of justices held that the Returning Officer had no powers to cancel elections in the seven polling units on September 22, 2018 which necessitated the supplementary election of September 27, which gave Oyetola victory, adding that the INEC official acted “ultra vires his powers.”
It urged INEC to withdraw Oyetola’s certificate and issue a fresh Certificate of Return to Adeleke, who is presently serving as a Senator from Osun State.
The tribunal’s ruling thus puts INEC’s powers to cancel elections where votes have been held and results declared into question. This electoral dispute may go all the way to the Supreme Court.
Adeleke polled 254, 698 votes while Oyetola got 254, 345 votes (353 votes apart) before the poll was declared inconclusive and a supplementary election was called.