The National and State Houses of Assembly Elections Petitions Tribunal has affirmed Neda Imasuen’s (Labour Party-Edo) election for the Edo South senatorial seat.
The candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Matthew Iduoriyekemwen and his party, had, through petition number EPT/ED/SEN/03/2023, approached the tribunal to challenge Imasuen’s victory in the Feb. 25 election.
The petitioners had approached the tribunal seeking the nullification of Imasuen’s victory on four grounds, including alleged non-qualification, over-voting, corrupt practice, non-compliance with the Electoral Act by the Independent National Electoral Commission, and the nomination of the first respondent by the Labour Party.
However, the three-member panel led by Justice Yusuf Mohammed dismissed the petition for lacking in merit and being incompetent. Mr Mohammed, who read the three-hour judgment, said the petitioners failed to prove beyond reasonable doubt that Mr Imasuen was not qualified to participate in the election.
The tribunal held that the allegations of non-qualification, party nomination or sponsorship for an election were pre-election matters that could only be entertained by a federal high court.
He added that Mr Iduoriyekemwen and his party also failed to prove that the senator did not score the majority of valid votes in the election.
The tribunal held that the petitioners were unable to prove the case of alleged non-compliance with the Electoral Act and irregularities during the election.
Reacting, Mr Imasuen dedicated the victory to the people of Edo and lauded the tribunal for its courageous interpretation of the law and standing for justice.
The tribunal struck out the petition filed by Valentine Asuen of the APC in Edo South.