The National and State Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal Lokoja, sitting in Abuja has dismissed the petitions of Mr Onimisi M. Itopa of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) challenging the victory of the elected Adavi/Okehi Federal Constituency Kogi State Honourable, Joseph Bello Asuku of the governing party, All Progressive Congress (APC), for lack of merit.
In a press statement released by Hon, Asuku Bello, he commended the judgement of court, stated that the outcome is a pointer to democratic development in Nigeria, he wrote:
“On Tuesday the 20th day of August 2019, the Election Petition Tribunal for Kogi State sitting in Abuja by unanimous decision confirmed the mandate overwhelmingly given to me at the polls by the good and progressive people of Adavi/Okehi Federal Constituency. This is in indeed your victory. Your steadfastness, belief in me and commitment to our common goal of giving Adavi/Okehi Federal Constituency purposeful and people driven representation throughout the duration of the Tribunal was my assurance that victory was sure. Today I return all glory to the Almighty God, the most benevolent One.
“Without a doubt, there were moments of uncertainty, but I had faith that at the end, justice will prevail. I would therefore like to thank all my supporters within and outside Adavi/Okehi Federal Constituency of Kogi State for standing firmly with me. Worthy of mention is the support I got from party leaders, especially His Excellency, our amiable Governor and leader, Alh. Yahaya A. Bello and my family particularly my greatest fan and cheerleader, Mrs. Irene Bello, my wife, on whose bended knees, this victory was served. Against all odds, our witnesses came out to testify not minding the stress of having to travel all the way to Abuja on more than one occasion and sometimes at very short notice. I remain in your debt.
“I dare to say with every sense of modesty that this petition was completely needless as the contest was between two brothers in which the electorates made their preferred choice. I am however comforted that it gave the Tribunal the opportunity to further enrich our electoral jurisprudence.
“I therefore congratulate the learned members of the Tribunal for the well researched judgment and for reinforcing the confidence in the judiciary as the bastion of our democracy. To my team of battle tested lawyers led by the legendary D.D. Dodo, SAN, OFR and ably assisted by Audu Anuga, Esq., I say thank you for the industry and ingenuity with which you handled this case.
“To my brother on the other side, I say we can all be winners by coming together to forge a common front for the overall good of our people of Adavi/Okehi Federal Constituency, the ultimate beneficiaries of this victory.
Once again, I thank God Almighty and look forward to fulfilling my mandate to my people without further distractions,” he said.