An Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Lagos State yesterday dismissed a petition filed by the Labour Party and reaffirmed Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu as the duly elected Governor of Lagos State in the March 9 polls.
The tribunal described the petition as a “futile and wasteful exercise”, noting that the petitioners (LP and Ifagbemi Awamaridi, its governorship candidate in the election) could not prove their allegations of mental incompetence against Sanwo-Olu in their evidence before the tribunal.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported that the three-man panel of judges led by Justice TT Asua, in its three-hour judgment, held that the petitioners also failed to prove their allegations of election malpractice against Sanwo-Olu and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC).
It held that its earlier decision to dismiss the petition, which was later appealed by the petitioners, was still valid because the petition was not filed according to the laws governing the electoral laws.
“The petitioners have failed to meet the requirement of the law. The petitioners have failed in our humble view to discharge the onus of proof which would have been placed on the Respondents.
“We confirm the return of Babajide Sanwo-Olu as the duly elected Governor of the State,” Asua said.
Earlier, the tribunal had struck out the names of the fourth to seventh respondents (The Resident Electoral Commissioner for Lagos State INEC, Returning Officer for Lagos State Governorship Election, the Commissioner of Police in Lagos State and the Nigeria Army).
It held that from the evidence adduced, there were no ties linking them to the allegations contained in the petition.