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APC, Fayose at war over calls to review Ekiti governorship poll

The All Progressives Congress in Ekiti State has petitioned the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, demanding a review of the June 21, 2014 governorship election that produced Ayo Fayose as governor.

The petition followed recent revelations by a former state secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party in Ekiti State, Temitope Aluko, that the election was manipulated by the then ruling party.

APC had previously written two petitions, dated February 13, 2015 and November 23, 2015, on the same subject matter.

Mr. Fayose, however, described the call as “another APC comedy” and a futile attempt to revisit a matter that had been decided by the Supreme Court.

The APC, in the petition, requested “for the prosecution of persons involved in conspiring and perpetrating acts of electoral fraud and malfeasance in the governorship election of June 21, 2014 in a manner other than that envisaged by the relevant provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended”.

In the petition, signed by the state chairman of APC, Olajide Awe, the APC said the review of the matter had become imperative in view of the way Mr. Fayose came to power.

“We are compelled to write this reminder to draw your attention to the urgent need to address the matter to ensure justice in what has turned a blight on the nation’s practice of democracy through treasonable actions that denied the votes of Ekiti people.

“The Ekitigate scandal is an unprecedented electoral crime of treason that must be addressed in an unprecedented manner,” the petition said.

The petitioners argued that there were violations of the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

APC also alleged that militarisation before, during and after the election created fears and heightened the level of insecurity in the state.

“In the spirit of the change agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari and in view of the new anti-corruption crusade that frowns at allowing criminals to enjoy the fruits of their crimes, the matter must be addressed in a manner that would not allow criminals to go away with their crimes.

“We view Ekitigate as an extraordinary shame of a nation, which is unprecedented in the annals of our electoral history.

“We unequivocally believe that this should elicit extra-ordinary remedy so that the course of justice, fair-play and pre-eminence of the Nigerian constitution are not permanently perverted and to act as deterrent to a repeat of such,” said the petition.

But Mr. Fayose’s spokesman, Idowu Adelusi, said it was a futile exercise as the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice had no such power to review the election.

He said Mr. Awe’s demand for a review suggested that he had no knowledge of the law.

“The issue concerning June 21, 2014‎ governorship election is a concluded matter which can never be revisited.

“The issue raised by Awe is an election matter conducted under stipulated time under the law because it is time bound.

“All parties have exhausted their rights at the tribunal, appeal court and Supreme Court under the law.

“It is only an unserious ‎minds like Awe that will rely on what Temitope Aluko has been saying,” Mr. Adelusi added.

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