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Court affirms Adeleke as PDP candidate

The PDP during its governorship primary elections on March 8 had held parallel primaries in the state.

A Federal High Court in Osogbo on Wednesday affirmed Ademola Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the authentic candidate of the party in the forthcoming July 16 governorship election in the state.

The judge, Nathaniel Ayo-Emmanuel, in his judgement, which lasted for more than one hour and 30 minutes, held that the primary election conducted at the WOCDIF Centre, Osogbo, on March 8, which produced Dotun Babayemi, was null and void.

Newsmen reports that PDP during its governorship primary elections, on March 8, had held parallel primaries in the state.

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Mr Ayo-Emmanuel, who cited Section 84 (14) of the Electoral Act, after a thorough proceeding and counter-arguments by both counsels, dismissed the suit filed by Mr Babayemi.

He said it was only the aspirant(s) that participated physically at the primary conducted by the PDP National Working Committee and not the one conducted by the party’s state executives that have power and locus standing to challenge such suit in court.

The judge upheld the governorship primary conducted by the PDP National Working Executive Committee at the Osogbo Township Stadium that produced Mr Adeleke.

He dismissed the claims of the plaintiff, saying he did not take part in the National Working Executive Committee primary election organised by his party on March 8, which was supervised by the Deputy Governor of Bayelsa, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo.

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In one of the primaries held at the Osogbo City Stadium, under the supervision of the Deputy Governor of Bayelsa, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, as Chairman, Mr Adeleke was declared the winner.

However, in another primary held at the Women and Children Development Initiative Foundation (WOCDIF) Centre, Osogbo, Mr Babayemi was declared the winner.

In a list of candidates later released by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Mr Adeleke was recognised.

Mr Babayemi, after the court session, told newsmen that the matter was a “family affair”.

He said his legal and political team would review the judgement in the best interest of the state.

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Mr Babayemi added that his decision on the judgement would be in the best interest of the state.

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Written by Ruth Semilore

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