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Edo tribunal adjourns Obaseki, Ize-Iyamu case indefinitely

Edo tribunal adjourns Obaseki, Ize-Iyamu case indefinitely
The Edo State Election Petitions Tribunal on Monday adjourned ruling sine die on the suit filed by the Peoples Demo­cratic Party (PDP) and its governorship candidate in the 2016 election, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.
The PDP and Ize-Iyamu are challenging the decla­ration by the Independent National Electoral Com­mission (INEC) of Mr Godwin Obaseki of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner of the election.
The adjournment came after counsel to the PDP and its governorship can­didate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, Yusuf Ali (SAN) asked the tribunal to rule that Ize-Iyamu is entitled to be declared the winner of the 2016 governorship election in the state.
Ali’s arguments were based among others on several motions and coun­ter affidavits which he pre­sented before the court as well as the written address­es which he adopted even as he called on the tribunal to strike out all the applica­tions by the respondents.
He had impressed it on the tribunal that all the al­legations raised by the pe­titioners in their petition before the tribunal were in actual fact against the INEC and as such only the INEC can answer them.
The lawyer said that whereas INEC did not call a single witness to defend the allegation against them, none of the respondents pleaded that the INEC manual labelled as an ex­hibit was for the training of only its officials.
He also argued that the fact that the second respon­dent Mr Godwin Obaseki expressed dissatisfaction with the results of the elec­tion in many polling units as contained in his written address showed that the petitioners were not alone in their submissions on the issue.
On the identity of the pe­titioner’s candidate which was raised by the second respondent, the legal lumi­nary argued that even the respondent’s witnesses had identified Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu as the petitioner in the open court.
He said: “The identity of the petitioner is not in doubt’, as he was the candi­date identified by even the INEC as the one the PDP presented for the 2016 gov­ernorship election in Edo State.
On the use of the INEC manual, he said that “if ticking is useless the Manu­al will not say it is relevant,” adding, “ticking is to iden­tify the voters and whether or not he has voted in an election.” - The Authority

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