National Assembly and State Assembly Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Ibadan, Oyo State capital, on Friday dismissed petitions filed by Mrs Monsurat Sunmonu of African Democratic Congress (ADC) and Mr Bisi Ilaka of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), both from Oyo Central senatorial district, against the election of Mr Teslim Folarin, of the All Progressive Congress (APC).
Sunmonu occupied the senatorial seat in the past 8th National Assembly, while Ilaka is currently Governor Seyi Makinde’s Chief of Staff.
The election petition panel, chaired by D. M. Igyusu, in an unanimous judgement read by Sikiru Owodunni, dismissed the petitions, saying that both lacked merit.
The three-man panel concluded that neither of the two petitioners was able to substantiate claims of over-voting and electoral malpractices pleaded against the victory of Folarin.
The tribunal then awarded cost of N20,000 against the petitioners, in favour of each of the respondents; Folarin, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and APC.
Folarin in his reaction to the judgement, thanked God and particularly lauded the judiciary for been the last hope of the common man.
He eulogised members of his senatorial district for voting massively for him and was delighted that their decision to elect him has been affirmed by the court.
Folarin then enjoined both petitioners to now respect the wish of the electorate and join hands in moving Oyo Central senatorial district forward.
However counsel to both Sunmonu and Ilaka, in their reactions to the judgement, said they had the instructions of their clients to proceed on appeal against the judgement.