Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu
The election of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu as the Governor of Lagos state has been upheld by The Supreme Court on Wednesday.
A seven-man panel of the apex court led by Justice Mary Peter-Odili affirmed the governor’s victory at the March 9, 2019 election after dismissing two separate appeals challenging the outcome of the poll.
Justice Paul Galinje, who delivered the lead judgments in the two appeals held that the appeals lacked merit.
One of the appeals dismissed by the court was filed by Prof. Ifagbemi Awamaridi and his party, the Labour Party. The other was by Chief Owolabi Salis and his party, Alliance Democracy.
Supreme Court’s judgment was delivered on Wednesday by Justice Paul Galinje.
According to Galinje, the reliefs sought by the appellant did not fall within the ambit of the schedule of the electoral act.
He said the prayers sort before the court in an election matter were jurisdictional and must fall within the reliefs allowed by the law in section 138 of the electoral act.
Sanwo-Olu, through his Counsel, Victor Opara had approached the apex court to upturn the order of the Appeal Court to resume hearing in the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal in Lagos State.
Chief Owolabi Salis, the governorship candidate of the Alliance for Democracy and his Labour Party counterpart, Ifagbemi Awamaridi had prayed the apex court to dismiss the appeal filed by the appellant and uphold the decision of the Appeal Court.
A five-man appellate court panel had held that the tribunal was wrong to have discontinued hearing on the basis that the AD and its governorship candidate, Salis had abandoned their petition.
“The case is to be remitted to the lower court for expeditious hearing of the matter,” the court held.
Similarly, it overturned the decision of the tribunal dismissing the petition filed by Ifagbemi Awamaridi, the governorship candidate of the Labour Party.
The appellate court ordered the return of the petition to the tribunal for expeditious determination.
The Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Ikeja, Lagos State, had in June dismissed a petition filed by the AD and LP parties challenging the victory of Sanwo-Olu at the March 9 election.