Governor Ademola Adeleke’s mandate won on July 6, 2022, in Osun State came to a hurting halt on Friday as the Osun Election Petitions Tribunal sacked him from office. His stay in office lasted a mere 62 days!
While annulling the July 16 Osun governorship poll results, the tribunal held that the Independent National Electoral Commission did not comply with the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as well as the Electoral Act as amended.
The Returning Officer for the election and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, announced that Adeleke got a total of 403,371 votes, beating the incumbent Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of the APC, who garnered 375,027 votes in the keenly contested race.
In the election held across 3,763 polling units in the 30 local government areas in Osun, the PDP won 17 of the LGAs, while the APC recorded more votes in the remaining 13. The PDP won in Ede North, Ede South, Ifelodun, Boluwaduro, Egbedore, Odo Otin, Osogbo, Ila, Atakumosa West, Olorunda, Ilesa West, Obokun, Oriade, Orolu, Ife North, Irepodun, and Ejigbo LGAs.
The APC, on the other hand, won in Boripe, Ilesa East, Ayedire, Ifedayo, Ife Central, Ayedaade, Iwo, Olaoluwa, Isokan, Atakumosa East, Irewole, Ife South, and Ife East LGAs. Out of the 1,955,657 registered voters in the state, 1,479,595 Permanent Voter Cards were collected before the election.
But the hope of Adeleke, known for his cone-shaped hats and dancing skills, and fondly referred to as the ‘Dancing Senator’, was dashed on Friday after the tribunal annulled the result of the July 16 governorship poll.
While delivering a majority decision vote, Justice Tetsea Kume ruled that INEC did not comply substantially with the constitution and the provisions of the Electoral Act.
He subsequently deducted the over-voting observed from the votes scored by the candidates and declared that Oyetola won the election, having polled 314, 921, while Adeleke’s score came down to 290, 266.
He directed INEC to withdraw Adeleke’s certificate of return and issue another one to Oyetola who won a majority of the lawful votes.