By Tunde Oyekola
For almost five hours yesterday, the first
witness called by Senator
Iyiola Omisore and his party, Peoples
Democratic Party (PDP), Prince
Bola Ajao, testified before the election petition
tribunal sitting in
Osogbo, Osun State capital.
Ajao who entered the witness box at 11.25 a.m
and was there till
2.48 p.m when the court went on break.
Resuming at 3.45 p.m, the state secretary of
PDP, Ajao, testified till
6.00 p.m and tendered the results he allegedly
received from the party
agents, and was opposed to by Counsel to the
Ajibola (SAN), Kemi Pinhero (SAN) and Ayotunde
Counsels to the first respondent, Governor Rauf
objected to the admissibility of the form EC8A
in Ayedaade Local
Government area of the state, saying they were
duplicates and not
Certified True Copy (CTC).
Pinhero, who is the counsel to the All
Progressives Congress (APC), told
the tribunal that the witness had failed to make
duplicate copy in his deposition in court.
Calling the attention of the tribunal to
paragraphs 14, 15, 20, 23, 26
and 27 of the witness’ written deposition,
Pinhero argued that
duplicate copies were not admissible in law.
He cited the case of Yakowa v Saheed 2012,
Electronic Law Report and
paragraph 41(8) of the Electoral Act, urging the
court to mark the
evidence as rejected.
Also, Counsel to the 3rd respondent, INEC,
Ogunleye, aligned himself
with the two SANs who are respondents’
counsel, citing the case of Agagu V
Mimiko 2009, 7 Nigeria Weekly Law Report,
Aregbesola V Oyinlola 2011,
ten NWLR and paragraph 4(6c) of the Electoral
Act, and urged the
tribunal to reject same.
Ogunleye also noted that there was a difference
between a report and a
result, arguing that the petitioner’s counsel had
failed to establish
the meaning of report.
Replying, petitioner’s counsel, Chris Uche
(SAN), referred the court
to Section 86 of the Evidence Act and paragraph
4(5c) of the first
schedule of Electoral Act, saying document
received by party’s
representative requires no certification.
Also, Uche cited the case of Aregbesola V
Oyinlola 2009 and Uche V
Igwe and others CA/EPT/65A/2011, maintaining
that it was the duty of
the tribunal to admit all election documents no
matter how it was
received and ascertain the truth.
Ruling, the chairman of the tribunal, Justice
admitted the duplicates of form EC8A in all the
16 Local Governments
tendered by the state Secretary of PDP, Ajao
and marked them as exhibits
190 to 204.
She noted that the admissibility of the
documents would be determined
Meanwhile, as at the time of filing this report,
contrary to the 20
minutes adopted to cross examine each
witnesses, the first witness was
not cross examined.