The Court of Appeal sitting in Ibadan, on Monday upheld the judgment of the Oyo State National and State House of Assembly tribunal, dismissing the petitions filed against the trio of Hon. Stanley Olajide representing Ibadan North West/South West federal constituency on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP); Senator Teslim Folarin, the senator representing Oyo Central senatorial disttict at the Red Chambers on the platform of All Progressive Congress (APC) and George Akintola Oluokun representing Akinyele/Lagelu federal constituency on the platform of APC.
The court held that the decision of the tribunal was valid in dismissing the petitions against the trio for lacking merit, adding that none of the allegations raised were proved by the witnesses as they failed in their testimonies to prove that there were irregularities, electoral malpractices and non compliance with the Electoral Act 2010 as amended.
Hon Saheed Akinade Fijabi of the APC had filed a petition at the tribunal against the declaration and return of Hon. Olajide of PDP, alleging electoral malpractices and that Olajide was not duly elected by the majority of the lawful votes cast during election, but the tribunal in its judgement said the malpractices were not substantial enough to have affected the outcome of the election held on February 23, 2019.
Chief Bisi Ilaka of the PDP had also filed petition contesting the emergence of Sen. Folarin of the APC on the ground that there were electoral malpractices that affected the result of the election but his was dismissed for lacking merit.
Kunle Yussuf of the PDP in his petition against Akintola Oluokun of the APC alleged electoral malpractices, irregularities, inflation of votes and non compliance with the Electoral act 2010 as amended. He had asked the tribunal to declare him the winner of the election or order a fresh election in the constituency but the tribunal dismissed his petition.
Dissatisfied with the ruling of the tribunal, the trio had filed an appeal against the judgments. However, they all lost their appeals as the court held that there were no averments to prove that the respondents ordered the alteration of results nor did any witness plead that the results were altered.
The court further held that there was no evidence presented in court to prove that the alleged malpractices were enough to affect election results or to evaluate the allegations pleaded.
The appellate court held that it finds the decision of the lower tribunal valid, adding that, “you cannot tender documents you didn’t prepare and cannot competently answer questions on its validity to prove your allegations.
“Pleadings aren’t human; they need human beings to give them life as they have no mouth and only speak through witnesses. If witnesses don’t explain and prove the allegations, such allegation is moribund,” the court declared.