Biodun Oyebanji has been affirmed as the elected governor of Ekiti state at the June 18, 2022 governorship election, by the Appeal Court, according to SaharaReporters.
A three-member panel of the court in a judgment delivered on Tuesday dismissed the appeal filed by the governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Segun Oni, for lacking merit.
Oyebanji who contested the poll on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), was declared the winner of the election after winning in 15 of the 16 local government areas of the state.
He got 187,057 votes to defeat Oni who had 82,211 votes and Bisi Kolawole of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who secured 67,457 votes.
Oni, who rejected the outcome of the election, filed a petition against Oyebanji and the APC before a three-member election tribunal chaired by Wilfred Kpochi.
He claimed in his petition that Oyebanji’s election was marred by irregularities and that it was wrong for the Mai Mala Buni-led APC leadership to have supervised the primary election that produced Oyebanji as the governorship candidate.
Oni further alleged that the incumbent Ekiti State Deputy Governor, Monisade Afuye, presented fake West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) results to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
But the tribunal on December 29, 2022, dismissed Oni’s petition.
Not satisfied with the decision of the tribunal, Oni proceeded to the Court of Appeal with the same claims and allegations.
But TheCable reports that in the judgments delivered virtually via Zoom, Hamma Barka who read the lead judgment upheld the judgment of the tribunal.
Also, on the allegation of certificate forgery against the deputy governor, Barka ruled that Oni ought to have called witnesses including an employee of the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) to prove his allegations.
The panel resolved all other issues raised by Oni in favour of Oyebanji and therefore dismissed the petition for lack of merit, and awarded N200,000 cost against Oni in favour of the fourth and fifth respondents.