…on September 25
Rhodes-Vivour and Jandor are challenging the return of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and Deputy Governor Obafemi Hamzat by INEC.
The Lagos State Governorship Election Tribunal is set to deliver judgment on Monday on the petitions filed by the governorship candidate of the Labour Party, Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, and his counterpart of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Olajide Adediran, popularly known as Jandor.
The Justice Arum Ashom-led panel communicated this message to parties on Saturday.
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Rhodes-Vivour and Jandor are challenging the return of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and Deputy Governor Obafemi Hamzat of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the March 18 governorship elections in Lagos State by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
On August 12, lawyers in the petitions adopted their final written addresses before the tribunal.
In proof of his petition, Rhodes-Vivour had called 10 witnesses including four subpoenaed witnesses.
In his final written address before the court, Rhodes-Vivour who came second in the polls said his petition was a “litmus test” of the superiority of the provisions of the Constitution and insisted that to dismiss it would be an endorsement of unconstitutionality.
He asked the tribunal to disqualify SanwoOlu and Hamzat and return him as the person with the highest number of lawful votes cast at the Lagos Governorship Election held on 18th March 2023.
INEC who is the first respondent in the petition called no witnesses but instead tendered two documents which were admitted as exhibits by the tribunal.
The electoral body also asked the tribunal to dismiss Rhodes-Viviour’s petition for lack of evidence.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and his deputy who were listed as the second and third respondents in the petition, also asked the tribunal to note the petitioner’s lack of seriousness for the petition as he neither filed a witness statement nor appeared personally to prove his own case.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) on its part described Rhodes-Vivour’s petition as “wishy-washy” and lacking evidence.
The PDP governorship candidate is also seeking the disqualification of Sanwo-Olu and Rhodes-Vivour in the election for non-compliance with the Electoral Act 2022 and INEC’s guidelines.
Jandor also called for the disqualification of the candidates of the APC and the Labour Party, Babajide Sanwo-Olu and Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour for “non-compliance” with the Electoral Act 2022 and the guidelines of INEC.
He also submitted that the exhibit master list tendered by the West Africa Examinations Council (WAEC) vindicates the petitioner that the second respondent, Gov Sanwo-Olu lied on oath about his qualifications. He insisted that there were differences in the names submitted by the governor and what the WAEC list showed.
Jandor and his party asked the tribunal to declare as wasted all votes cast for the two candidates in the election.
INEC in its response submitted that the petition is bereft of evidence. The commission urged the tribunal to dismiss the petition in its entirety.
The governor, his deputy and their party, through their lawyers, also told the tribunal to dismiss the petition.
Rhodes- Vivour in his response described Jandor’s petition as “an academic affair”, noting that the tribunal is not a classroom, but a place for serious business.