Ondo State Governor, Olusegun Mimiko has described as frivolous, abuse of court process and wasting of the tribunal’s time, the petition before the Justice Kaka’an-led Governorship Election Petition Tribunal against his re-election by the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and three other political parties, challenging his re-election of the October 20.
Mimiko’s submission is contained in replies to the petitions filed by four of five political parties, challenging his victory in the last October 20 election. ACN, Accord Party (AP), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and Peoples Democratic Congress (PDC) had last month approached the tribunal to reject the results of the poll, asking it to nullify the poll and order fresh election. The first respondent prayed the tribunal to throw out the cases for being frivolous, vexatious, abuse of court process, as well as lacking in merit and substance.
A former Nigerian Bar Association President, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN) leading a 35-man legal team, including three, other Senior Advocates of Nigeria, Ricky Tarfa, Adebayo Adenipekun and John Baiyeshea, as well as Dr Olumide Ayeni and Abayomi Akanmode filed Mimiko’s replies. His 2,318 page-reply to ACN petition listed 1,047 witnesses to give evidence before the tribunal, while that of the Accord Party had 19 pages with three witnesses listed for defense.
In the case of CPC, Mimiko submitted a reply of 51 pages with four witnesses and filed 29 pages with four witnesses against PDP. To prove its case at the tribunal, the first respondent was relying on Forms EC8A-D, ballot papers and voters registers used during the poll, reports of local and international independent observers, reports of local and international media on the conduct of the election, as well as video clips and photographs.
The state Chairman of Labour Party, Chief Olu Ogidan told newsmen during the filing of the replies that since the petitioners were fighting a wrong cause, it would be easier for the camel to pass through the hole of a needle than for the contending parties to win their cases at the tribunal.