Following the judgment of the Supreme Court which upheld the victory of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu as the winner of October 10, 2020 governorship election in Ondo State, the governor has described the outcome of the judgment as an act of God.
According to Akeredolu, the judiciary should also be commended for standing by the truth and for not yielding to any influence.
The Supreme Court, had on Wednesday, in a 4 to 3 judgment, dismissed the appeal filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Eyitayo Jegede, against the election of Akeredolu.
While calling on Jegede to join him in the task of making the state great, Akeredolu maintained that Nigerians can still be proud of the country’s judiciary.
Addressing some journalists at the Government House grounds, Akeredolu said, “I just heard the news of the final decision of the final court on the election petition filed by my brother, Eyitayo Jegede, SAN. The supreme dismissed his appeal on 4-3 basis and that in essence is that from the Tribunal up to the Supreme Court.
“The justices have affirmed that the petition was most frivolous. As you know 12 Justices have affirmed in our favour and only three supported that petition. Three at the Tribunal, five at the Court of Appeal and four at the Supreme Court.
“So, I’ve every reason to thank God and to appreciate our judiciary for standing by the truth and for not yielding to any influence. I believe that we can still be proud our judiciary in this country.
“For me, it is an opportunity again for us to get on board and do more work.
“And for me, the glory of this victory of this election petition success is to God Almighty. And I want to thank the legal team that have represented us. We have so many Senior Advocate of Nigeria.
“We thank the INEC team led by Charles Edosomwan and Bawa, both of them SAN. We thank also the APC team lead by Lateef Fabgbemi, SAN and others including Sola Oke, SAN.
“I want to also thank my team led by Akinola Olujimi, SAN for their work. We now plan to get this behind us and get to work.
“My advise to Jegede is that, this has ended now. Let him come, let us work together, at least for the upliftment of Ondo State. I don’t doubt his love for the state. He has served here before as Attorney General for about seven and half years.
“Let him come over, let us work together and work for this state. That is my advise to him. We don’t go any longer to the privy council. It has ended here.”
Earlier, the Supreme Court has upheld the victory of Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the last governorship election in Ondo State.
The judgment was delivered after one hour of anxiety and a split decision of four to three.
In the majority judgment delivered by Justice Emmanuel Agim, four of the seven-member panel, dismissed the appeal by Eyitayo Jegede and his party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), on the grounds that it was incompetent.
Justice Agim upheld an earlier judgment of the Court of Appeal that the petition filed by Jegede and his party at the election tribunal was incompetent because they failed to include the Yobe State Governor and Chairman of the Caretaker Committee of the APC, Mai Mala Buni as a party.
In the minority judgment read by Justice Mary Peter-Odili, the court upheld the appeal and dismissed the cross appeal by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Akeredolu and the APC.
Odili and two other members of the panel were of the view that since the APC, for which Buni acted, was a party in the case, there was no need to include him as a party.