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Osun: Tribunal dismisses Oyinlola’s applications

By Gbenga Olarinoye
The new Osun State Elections Petitions tribunal sitting in Osogbo, yesterday dismissed four applications brought
by Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) against the petition filed by Mr Rauf
Aregbesola of the Action Congress (AC).

Oyinlola had filed three petitions while INEC filed a petition seeking for the dismissal of the petition on the
grounds that it was presented at the expiration of the mandatory 30-days stipulated by the electoral act.

While dismissing all the applications moved by Oyinlola and INEC in its entirety for lack of merit, the Justice
Garba Alli-led tribunal, however, asked the parties to bear the costs as he refused to acede to the request of
lead counsel to Aregbesola, Deji Sasegbon (SAN) for a cost of N800,000 against the respondents.

At the last sitting, four applications were heard by the five-member tribunal with lead counsel to Oyinlola,
Yusuff Alli (SAN) urging the tribunal to dismiss Aregbesola’s petition on the ground that he presented his
petition on May 18, 2007 whereas the expiration date was May 15, 2007.

Ruling on all the four applications yesterday, Justice Alli held that Form TF002 is the valid document for
presentation of petition and not Form TF003 as argued by the respondents in the petition.

He observed that since Form TF002 which is the evidence of presentation of petition was presented and dated 11th
May 2007, the fact that it was not delivered on time was not the fault of the petitioner.

The tribunal also dismissed another application seeking for the striking out of presiding officers listed as
number 17-1365, insisting that the lumping together does not invalidate the fact that the presiding officers are
parties in the petition.

A similar motion by INEC was also dismissed by the tribunal.

Shortly after the ruling, Deji Sasegbon informed the tribunal of an application filed before the court on June
25. Responding, lead counsel to Oyinlola, Tayo Oyetibo (SAN) told the court that the application was served on
him on June 26 and needed time to study it and prepare his reply.


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