Law News
INEC replies Owolade’s 98 page petition

The Independent National Electoral Commision INEC has filed a 128-page reply to the petition filed by Mr Niyi Owolade, a candidate of Accord Party, who polled 377 votes at the August 9, 2014 governorship election in Osun State.

In the reply dated  September 19, 2014 and signed by Chief Adegboyega Awomoolo, SAN; A.B Mahmoud, SAN, Dr. Onyechi Ikpeazu, SAN, Hassan M. Liman, SAN; Ahmed Raji SAN and 17 other lawyers, they ask the court to strike out paragraphs 17, 19, 22, 23, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 33, 34, 36, 37, 40, 41, 42(i) 42(ii) 42(vii), (2) (3), (4), (5), 42(ix), 43, 44 and 46 of the petition on the ground that they are generic, vague and imprecise.

The paragraphs sought to be struck out by INEC is 28 paragraphs out of the 46 paragraphs’ petition.
If the INEC prayer is granted, the implication is that there will be nothing left for the petitioner to prove at the hearing of the petition.

Apart from the preliminary issue raised in its reply, INEC contended that Governor Rauf Aregbesola sued as the First Respondent who was validly elected and returned in the August  9, 2014 in Osun State gubernatorial election.

They further contended that the election substantially complied with the Electoral Act as well as the INEC Manual for Election Officials 2014.

According to INEC, there were no irregularities or acts of non- compliance which substantially affected the election in the 30 Local Government Areas that comprise Osun State.
On the allegation that O’YES cadets were used as INEC ad-hoc staff, INEC in its reply stated that in line with its regular practice and policy, Third Respondent used members of the NYSC as Presiding Officers and Assistant Presiding Officers at the election.

The commission added that Supervisory Presiding Officers and other sensitive positions were filled with staff of Federal tertiary institutions and other federal establishments.

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