Abiodun says victory is triumph of rule of law
• As Tribunal Strikes Out Akinlade’s Petition
Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun has described the judgment by the State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal as the triumph of rule of law; victory for democracy and further validation of the mandate bestowed on him at the polls.
Abiodun, said this after the ruling of the Tribunal, led by Justice Yusuf Halilu, yesterday, which struck out the petition of the Allied Peoples Movement’s (APM) Gubernatorial Candidate, Hon. Abdulkabir Adekunle Akinlade, seeking disqualification of the Governor, on grounds of submitting false academic qualification.
The Tribunal ruled that the issue regarding the academic qualification in Abiodun sworn affidavit had been laid to rest by the Appeal Court, and so, petitioner can’t be allowed to resurrect or open same matter at the Tribunal since the Appellate court had deemed it “statue barred.”
Halilu said the Tribunal would stand by the decision of the Appellate court, adding that the petitioner also filed the application challenging Abiodun’s qualification outside the window of time allowed.
The Governor, in his reaction said he remained magnanimous in victory and extended, once again, a hand of fellowship to all opposition elements in the state, calling on the opposition APM to forget about 2019 gubernatorial elections and join hands with his government on its “Building Our Future Together” agenda.
He advised that rather than dissipate energy and resources on litigation, they should either negotiate their return to the All Progressives Congress (APC) where they were or start preparing for 2023 elections.
“Opposition strengthens democracy and I appreciate the fact that he went to the Tribunal in exercise of his constitutional rights. The Tribunal has validated the mandate freely given to us by the masses at the polls.
“The candidate and all members of APM and indeed members of other parties are free to join APC. Those who are still aggrieved should learn that democracy is about majority rule. The people have spoken and the Tribunal has validated their choice of me. Anybody who feels otherwise should start preparing for 2023.”
Abiodun thanked the people of the state for their support and solidarity, promising that he would not take their mandate for granted as he would continue to work towards enhancing the people’s welfare, peace and prosperity of the state.
Efforts to reach the challenger, Akinlade through phone calls were unsuccessful.