Senatorial poll: Smart Adeyemi asks Tribunal to disqualify Melaye




NNPC

Senator Smart Adeyemi
Senator Smart Adeyemi

Senator Smart Adeyemi, Senatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for Kogi West, has petitioned the National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal in Lokoja, Kogi State, alleging massive irregularities and fraud in the March 28 election.
He alleged that the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dino Melaye, connived with INEC officials to perpetrate fraud that gave him victory at the poll.
Adeyemi in a 250-page petition filed by his counsel, J.O Olatoye (SAN), said he has ample evidence to back his claims that the election was massively rigged in favour of the APC candidate.
According to him, some of the irregularities noticed during the elections are falsification of results, mutilation of result sheets, replacing authentic figures with fake figures, use of writing materials to erase already-typed figures etc.
He therefore, prayed the Tribunal to declare him winner of the March 28, 2015 Senatorial election in Kogi West, and to direct the withdrawal of the Certificate of Return already issued to Melaye by the INEC.
The petition reads:“The 1st and 2nd Respondents (Melaye and INEC respectively) obtained an apparent, manufactured and feigned majority over the Petitioners, whereas in truth and in fact, the Petitioners would have had a majority of lawful votes of the electorates of the said constituency at the said Election and the 1st Petitioners would have been returned as senator of the said constituency.
“That the Petitioners aver that the 1st Respondent was at the time of the Senatorial election to the Kogi West Senatorial District held on the 28th day of March, 2015 not qualified to contest the election.
“That the Petitioners aver that the 1st Respondent is not a product of any primary election conducted by any political party. The Petitioner shall rely on the 3rd Respondent’s Letter dated 8th December 2014 with reference number INEC/KG/KB/22/REP/71.
“The Petitioners shall rely on all the Forms EC. 8A, Forms EC. 8A (1), Forms EC. 8B(1), Forms EC. 8E(1), Forms EC. 1A (1), Forms 40G, Forms 40G(1), Voters Register for Kogi West Senatorial District, the report of the Electoral Officers and Returning Officers of the Kogi West Senatorial District for the 2015 election, Certified true Copy of 2015 INEC Electoral Guidelines and all other sensitive documents used in the 2015 elections for the Kogi West Senatorial District. The 3rd Respondent is hereby put on notice to produce the originals of the said documents at the trial”.
He, therefore, prayed the tribunal: “That it be determined and declared that the 1stRespondent, Hon. Dino Melaye, was not duly elected or returned by the majority of the lawful votes cast at the election to Kogi West Senatorial District held on the 28th day of March, 2015.
“Declaration that the 1st Petitioner, Senator Smart Adeyemi, scored the majority of lawful votes cast at the election into the National Assembly Election for Kogi West Senatorial District held on the 28th day of March, 2015 and ought to have been declared the winner and returned as elected into the Senate.
“An order declaring the 1st Petitioner, Senator Smart Adeyemi, the winner of the Senatorial Election for Kogi West Senatorial District held on the 28th day of March, 2015 and returns him as elected.
“An order withdrawing or nullifying the Certificate of Return issued to the 1st Respondent, Hon Dino Melaye, as the winner of the election for the office of the senate for Kogi West Senatorial District held on the 28th March, 2015.
“An order directing the 3rd Respondent, the Independent National Electoral Commission, to issue a Certificate of Return to the 1st petitioner, Senator Smart Adeyemi, as the winner of the election forthwith.
OR IN THE ALTERNATIVE:
I.A DECLARATION that the 1st Respondent was not qualified at the time of the election to contest the Kogi West Senatorial District election held on the 28th March 2015.
II.AN ORDER disqualifying the candidature of the 1st Respondent as candidate for the election into the Kogi West Senatorial District held on 28th March 2015.
III.AN ORDER directing the 3rdRespondent to conduct a fresh election into the Kogi West Senatorial District.
Adeyemi cited some of the irregularities across majority of the polling units in the district thus: Result sheet, Form EC.8A(1) in Polling Unit 005 (Open Space Okejumu), Iffe/Ikoyi/Okejumu Ward, Ijumu Local Government Area was not authenticated in accordance with the 3rd Respondent’s Electoral Official Manual for the 2015 for Kogi West Senatorial Election as the official stamp of the 3rd Respondent was not affixed on the document, completely compromising the authenticity of the document.
He averred: That the 1st Respondent was not duly elected by the majority of lawful votes cast.
a.The election of the 1st Respondent was invalid by reason of substantial non-compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2010 (As Amended).
That the 1st Respondent, whose election is questioned, was, at the time of the election, not qualified to contest the election.
That INEC and her agents caused fictitious scores to be fabricated and unlawfully allotted to the 1st and 2nd Respondents at the polling units 001, 002, 004, 008, 010, 013, 016, 017, 020, 023, of Lokoja Ward “A; Polling Units 001, 011, 015, of OworoWard, Polling Units 002, 003, 004, and 007 of Lokoja Ward “B”, Polling Units 001, and 010 of Kupa South Ward and polling Units 003, and 004 of Lokoja Ward “E” in the Lokoja Local Government.
That the total number of votes fabricated and unlawfully allotted to the 1st Respondent at the aforesaid polling units was 2,247, all in the bid to make the 1st Respondent win the election at all cost
That the Tribunal should allow the examination and counting of the ballot papers used at polling units at the trial to ascertain the lawful votes cast for the 1st and 2nd Respondents and other parties.
Adeyemi declared that significant instances of corrupt, arbitrary and fraudulent practices were perpetrated in several wards in Ijumu, Yagba East, Kogi, Lokoja, Kabba/Bunu Local Government Areas, which gravely and substantially compromised the integrity of the electoral process in those wards.
At Ijumu, Odokoro, the result for Polling Unit 002 (Open Space by Market Site) was recorded on an illegal and unauthorised result sheet, Form EC. 8A(1)VP, which is not accredited by INEC to be used at the 2015 Kogi West Senatorial Elections.
i.At Ijumu, Aiyetoro 1, Form EC.8B(1) has no corresponding result sheet Form, EC.8A(1) for Polling Units 001(Open Space Iluhagba Gbede), 002 (Open Space By Okebukun Quarters Aiyetoro), 003 (Open Space By Aiyewa quarters Beside Community Bank), 004 (Open Space By Iluhagba Quarters Aiyetoro), 005 (Open Space 1 Odda Quarters), 006 (Open Space 2 Odda Quarters Aiyetoro), 007 (Open Space 3 Odda Quarters).
ii.At Aiyetoro II, there were wrong and illegal use of the customised result sheets, Form EC.8A(1), meant for other polling units in polling units 002 (Odokoro Quarters), 004 (Open Space by Koko Quarters), 005 (Open Space By Model Primary School Aiyetoro Gbede) in Ijumu Local Government Area.
iii.In polling unit 001 (Aiyetoro Gbede Town Hall), 002 (Open Space by Market Site Odokoro) in Aiyetoro II, Ijumu Local Government Area, an illegal and unauthorised result sheet, Form EC. 8A(1)VP, which is not accredited by INEC to be used at the 2015 Kogi West Senatorial Elections, was used to record the voting result.
At Koton-Karfe ward, a substantial number of the results from the polling units shows substantial non-compliance with the provisions of the Electoral Act in the manner following:
i.There were wrong entries and manifest discrepancies between Form EC. 8A(1) and Form EC.8B(1) in the result from Polling Unit 003 (Ukworiko compound) in Kogi Local Government, Ukwo, Koton-Karfe.
ii.There were wrong and illegal use of the customised result sheets, Form EC.8A(1) meant for other polling units in polling units 001 (LGEA School Girinya), 002 (Market Square, Chakaruku/Tuturu), 005 (Ozahi), 006 (LGEA School Compound Iraki), 007 (Girinya Market Square) in Kogi Local Government in Girinya Ward, Koton-Karfe.
iii.There were wrong and illegal use of the customised result sheets, Form EC.8A(1) meant for other polling units in polling units 001 (Gegu Egba under a tree), 002 (LGEA School Compound Adabo), 003 (LGEA School Comp Ahoko) in Kogi Local Government, Gegu-Beki North.
iv.There were wrong and illegal use of the customised result sheets, Form EC.8A(1) meant for other polling units in polling units 001 (Near Borehole), 002 (Open Space AgidiEgbira), 004 (LGEA OrehiGegu-Beki), 006 (Igbogo Junction Gegu-Beki) in Kogi Local Government, Gegu-Beki SouthWard.
The result sheet, Form EC.8A(1) for the polling unit designated as 003 (Ukwo Compound) in Ukwo, Koton-KarfeWard in Kogi Local Government showed inconsistencies and conflicting figures with the entries in Form EC.8B (1).
The total valid votes in form EC8A in Lokoja Local Government, Lokoja-E ward from the under listed polling units designated as 001 (Kwata-Koto North Area, Open Space), 005 (Galilee Area, Open Space Area, Galilee), 006 (SarikinNoma Area, Open Space, SarikinNoma), 007 (Teachers’ Area Open Space, near Poly Gate), 008 (SarikinNoma Area, Open Space (garage) Opposite ‘B’ Division) are different from the result in form EC8B.
Adeyemi further averred that in Kabba/Bunu Local Government Area, INEC officers deliberately refused to submit some result sheets where he (Adeyemi) had overwhelming votes. As a result, the polling units results in Form EC8A(1) were not recorded on Form EC.8B(1). In Kabba/Bunu Odo-Akete Ward, polling units 001 (Beside Agbede Workshop Kabba), Olorunjo’s Mechanic workshop), 002 (Beside Agbede workshop) and 003 (Open Space Odo-Akete) have no corresponding EC.8B(1), leading to loss of several votes in the final collation of votes.
He also said INEC officials, in collusion with agents of Melaye and APC, caused or permitted the inclusion of invalid votes in the votes counted for Kogi West Senatorial District. particularly at the following polling units and wards: the Polling Units 001, 002, 004, 008, 010, 013, 016, 017, 020, 023, of Lokoja Ward “A; Polling Units 001, 011, 015, of Oworo Ward, Polling Units 002, 003, 004, and 007 of Lokoja Ward “B”, Polling Units 001, and 010 of Kupa South Ward and polling Units 003, and 004 of Lokoja Ward “E” in the Lokoja Local Government.
The result sheet, Form EC.8A(1) in Polling Unit 012 (Crowther Memorial/SabonGari), Lokoja-A Ward, Lokoja Local Government Area was mutilated by cancellations with conflicting inputs in figures and in words and was not authenticated in accordance with INEC’s Electoral Official Manual and INEC’s official stamp was not affixed on the document, completely compromising the authenticity of document.
In Ijumu Local Government, the result sheet, Form EC.8A(1), in Polling Unit 001 (Open Space By Ife Oluwa’s Med. Store), Ekinrin Ade Ward, Ijumu Local Government Area was not authenticated.




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