Senator Smart Adeyemi (Kogi West, 2007 – 2015) on Monday closes his case before the Kogi State Election Tribunal sitting in Abuja, where he’s challenging the pronouncement of Senator Dino Melaye as the winner of the Kogi West 2019 senatorial election.
Counsel to Adeyemi, Chief Toyin Adeniyi before closing his case called on three witnesses; Senator Smart Adeyemi (Star witness); The Director General Adeyemi Campaign Organization, Mr. Adoga Ibrahim and the Kogi West Zonal Chairman of APC, Mr. Ropo Asala who were also cross examined by the respondents counsels.
Adeyemi counsel likewise pleaded for the admissibility of the February 15, 2019 Lokoja Federal High Court judgement which declared that election collation, announcement and other matters as regarded Kogi West senatorial election should be carried out at its senatorial headquarters Kabba and not in Lokoja; which was ignored by INEC; which is illegal and runs contrary to the Electoral Acts and the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
He said the change of collation centre gave room for all the manipulations, tampering, mutilations of results sheets and other irregularities witnessed in the election results.
He also prayed the court to admit the Letter written to Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to request for the certified true copy of lists of PVC distributed in the senatorial axis which indicated over voting in three of the challenged LGAs of Yagba West, Lokoja and Ijumu.
The tribunal had earlier during the trial accepted INEC certified true copy of PVC distributions in the senatorial axis.
However, counsel to 2nd and 3rd Respondents, (PDP and INEC) did not challenge the admissibility of the Federal High Court judgment but asked the tribunal to reject the INEC letter of PVC distribution because it was not “listed or front loaded” by the petitioner at the beginning of the petition.
Chairman of the three – man panel, Justice O. A Chijoke readmitted the February 15 Federal High Court judgment as evidence but declined to accept INEC letter of PVC distribution, said it should be marked as “tendered but rejected”.
The tribunal subsequently adjourned to June 10 and gave the respondents (Dino, PDP, INEC) 15 days to open and close their defense.