Following the judgment of the Appeal Court, in Ibadan, Oyo State on Monday on a petition filed by Bayo Adelabu, All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship candidate in the March 9, 2019 election, the state Governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde has declared that the court has not overturned his victory at the poll.
The Governor further declared that the mandate of the people of Oyo State given to him through the March 9, 2019, remained intact, stressing that the mandate could not be taken through the backdoor.
Adelabu, who was dissatisfied with the declaration of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, that Makinde overwhelmingly won the last election, approached the election tribunal, asking it to upturn the victory of the incumbent governor and declare him winner.
However, the tribunal nullified the petition for failure to prove all the allegations raised.
Unsatisfied, Adelabu appealed the tribunal’s judgment at the Appeal Court. While the court held that the lower court did not deal fairly with the petitioner and set aside the judgment of the tribunal, it neither made a pronouncement nor upturn the victory of Makinde.
According to a statement signed by his spokesperson, Taiwo Adisa, “There is no ambiguity as to the state of things in our Pacesetter State as far as the election of March 9, 2019, is concerned. Our party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) won the election. The victory was reaffirmed by a ruling of the Election Petitions Tribunal, sitting in Ibadan, the state capital.
“On Monday, the Court of Appeal, also sitting in Ibadan, delivered its judgment on the appeal by the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adebayo Adelabu. In its ruling, the Appeal Court refused to grant any of the three key reliefs sought by the APC candidate. The Court refused to nullify the election; it refused to order a fresh election and it also refused to order the retrial of the petition.
“With the above being the reality of the outcome of the Appeal Court ruling, the election of Engineer Seyi Makinde as the Governor of Oyo State has just been reaffirmed. There is nothing in the Appeal Court’s ruling that affects the returns made by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and there is nothing that tampers with the mandate freely given to Engineer Seyi Makinde by the people of Oyo State”.
The statement added, “Governor Makinde hereby urges the good people of Oyo State to remain calm and refuse to be provoked by agents of disruption who are seeking to upturn the truth, which remains constant against all odds. We also wish to enjoin the people of Oyo State to ignore the doctored reports in some media outlets, which are merely quoting the judgment of the Court of Appeal out of context. With a clear margin of Makinde’s 515,621 votes to Adelabu’s 357,982 votes, the preference of the people of Oyo State is as clear as day and night”.
Reassuring that he would not be deterred from taking the state to greater heights through the implementation of his four-point service agenda, Governor Makinde insisted that positive governance and unprecedented development would continue to be the portion of the people of the state throughout his tenure.