FORMER vice president Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has commiserated with the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) Osun State gubernatorial candidate Senator Ademola Adeleke over his loss in the Supreme Court earlier today.
Osun State held its gubernatorial elections in September 2018 but the matter has been the subject of a fierce legal battle between the PDP and the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). Today, the matter ended in the Supreme Court with Governor Oyetola being declared the winner, ending the aspirations of Senator Adeleke.
In a highly complicated and complex political drama, Senator Adeleke was declared the winner of the election by the Osun State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Abuja on March 22. This overturned the declaration by the Independent National Electoral Commission (Inec) which had originally declared Governor Oyetola, the winner with a total of 255,505 votes while Senator Adeleke scored 255,023 votes.
Inec had originally declared Governor Oyetola the winner after holding a re-run in Osogbo, Orolu, Ife North and Ife South local government areas, after it which it announced him victor with a total of 255,505 votes while Senator Adeleke scored 255,023 votes. Senator Adeleke had, however appealed the declaration and won it based on the argument that the re-run was not necessary and he won the original contest with 353 votes.
Governor Oyetola then appealed the decision of the lower court and the Federal Court of Appeal, sitting in Abuja upheld his decision. A five-member panel led by Justice Jummai Sankey delivered the lead judgement which favoured Governor Oyetola on the grounds that the election tribunal’s ruling read by Justice Peter Obiora amounted to judicial hearsay.
Senator Adeleke took the matter to the Supreme Court, where earlier today, four of the seven judges ruled in favour of Governor Oyetola and the APC. In the judgement read out by Justice Rhodes Vivour, they upheld the decision of the Court of Appeal.
Alhaji Atiku Abubakar reacted to the judgement by extending his hand of brotherhood to Senator Adeleke in all his future endeavours. He also said that he will join the good people of Osun State to stand with Senator Adeleke in good times and in difficult days.
“I join with people of goodwill all over Nigeria to say to Senator Ademola Adeleke, and the people of the great state of Osun, that we stand with them in good times and in difficult days. The Supreme Court has ruled and because of its judicial finality, the legal case is over.
“I extend my right hand of brotherhood to Senator Adeleke in all his future endeavours and I assure the good people of the state of Osun that the Peoples Democratic Party remembers their love and acceptance and will never forget to stand by them no matter the situation. Finally, I urge the nation’s judiciary to take a pulse of the nation and reflect it as in their hands, God has placed a great responsibility and it is their duty to ensure that justice is done, irrespective of the pressure to do otherwise by the powers that be,” Alhaji Abubakar added.