By Myke Uzendu
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said that it is undaunted by the judgement of the election petition tribunal on Kogi election but will reclaim the people’smandate at the Appeal Court, insisting that its candidate, Engr. Musa Wada, won the November 2019 Kogi state governorship election.
A three man election tribunal panel, sitting in Abuja had in a split judgement dismissed PDP’s petition, maintaining that the party could not substantiate that election results were manipulated in seven local governments of the state.
But PDP in a statement on Sunday by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, described the judgment as an alarming miscarriage of justice,particularly as the PDP and its candidate, Engr. Musa Wada, laid incontrovertible proofs of electoral manipulations by Governor Yahaya Bello and the All Progressives Congress (APC), as affirmed by Justice Ohimai Ovbiagele in his landmark dissenting judgment.
According to PDP, “Our party was able to lay incontestable evidence of over-voting,massive thumb printing, voter intimidation, thuggery, violence and other malpractices used by the APC and compromised by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officials to rob our candidate and the people of Kogi state of their mandate”.
The party expressed shock that despite the overwhelming evidence before the tribunal,proving that Governor Yahaya Bello did not win the election, justice was thwarted.
“In fact, the lull and despondency that have enveloped Kogi state since the tribunal’s flawed verdict is an indication that the judgment failed to uphold justice in the genuine aspiration of the people of Kogi state in the election.
“The fact remains that the evidences are clear that our candidate is the genuine choice of the people and our party is confident that the Court of Appeal will uphold justice in this matter.
“The people of Kogi state now look up to the Appeal Court to reverse this injustice endorsed by the tribunal, given the evidence laid, as affirmed by the courageous verdict of Justice Ohimai” stated the party.
The statement further commended Justice Ohimai for his fearlessness in upholding the truth and showing that there is hope in the institution of the judiciary.
The party expressed confidence that the Appeal Court will address the substance of the case, which it said the tribunal overlooked in rendering its judgment.
According to PDP, the people of Kogi state deserve a government elected by them and not one imposed by enemies of democracy.
The PDP urged the people not to despair over the judgment of the tribunal while trusting that justice will be served at the Appeal Court.