APM Moves to Withdraw Case Against Makinde’s Victory
Governorship Election Petition: APM Seeks Withdrawal, Hearing Adjourned
In a surprising turn of events, the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal in Ibadan has adjourned the hearing of an application filed by the Allied Peoples’ Movement Party (APM) seeking to withdraw their petition challenging the victory of Governor Makinde. The hearing is now scheduled to take place on Thursday.
The APM had approached the tribunal to contest the declaration made by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which declared Governor Makinde of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the winner of the March 18 Governorship election with 563,756 votes.
During Monday’s proceedings, Mr. H. Bello, the APM Counsel, informed the court that the case was initially set for a hearing. However, during his preparation, he discovered that the petitioner, APM, had already congratulated Governor Makinde and his party. Bello explained that the petitioner had lost interest in the outcome of the petition and, therefore, the party’s National Chairman instructed him to file an application for the withdrawal of the petition.
Bello argued that withdrawing the petition would not only save the time of the tribunal but also that of the respondents’ counsel. He further added that he had filed the application for withdrawal on Monday and served the respondents’ counsel accordingly.
Responding to the application, Mr. K. Duru, the counsel representing INEC, Mr. Isiaka Olagunju (SAN), the counsel to the PDP, and Mr. Kunle Kalejaye (SAN), the counsel to Governor Makinde, all confirmed receipt of the application and stated that they would not oppose the withdrawal.
However, Justice Ejiron Emudainohwo, the chairman of the tribunal, made it clear that the panel would not address the application for withdrawal on that day. Emudainohwo clarified that the proceedings were scheduled for a hearing and not for the hearing of the application for withdrawal.
The adjournment has left many speculating about the reasons behind the APM’s sudden change of heart and withdrawal of their petition. The upcoming hearing on Thursday will likely shed more light on the matter and determine the subsequent course of action in this closely watched gubernatorial election dispute.