By Ikechukwu Okaforadi
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the October 10 Ondo State governorship election, Eyitayo Jegede, has told the Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Akure that Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) was not validly nominated by his party.
Jegede who was in the witness box for over an hour to defend his petition before the Tribunal said the Governor of Yobe State, Mai Mala Buni, as a sitting governor was not supposed to function as the Caretaker Chairman of the APC.
Jegede began his defence by tendering some documents in respect of the October poll through his lawyer, Onyechi Ikpeazu, which were admitted by the Tribunal despite objection from the defendants’ counsel.
While being cross-examined by counsel to the APC, Lateef Fagbemi, Jegede agreed that he was not a member of the APC nor aware of any court decision challenging the party’s NEC resolution which empowered the Mai Bala Buni led caretaker committee to nominate candidates.
While also being cross-examined by counsel to Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and the Deputy Governor-elect, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, Akin Olujimi, Jegede admitted that he was not a maker of the documents, including the APC constitution which he tendered before the Tribunal.
While Jegede’s counsel declined an interview with journalists, other lawyers expressed satisfaction with the formal commencement of the hearing.
The Tribunal subsequently adjourned sitting till Wednesday.