Kogi: Appeal Court Reserves Judgment in Ajaka’s Appeal Against Ododo’s Election

The Court of Appeal, Abuja, on Thursday, reserved judgment in the appeal filed by the Social Democratic Party (SDP) candidate, Muritala Ajaka, and his party challenging the outcome of the November 11, 2023 governorship election in Kogi State.

The Kogi State governorship election petition tribunal sitting in Abuja on May 27 affirmed Usman Ododo of All Progressives Congress (APC) as the duly elected governor of the state.

The three-member panel headed by Justice Ado Birnin-Kudu held that the petition was bereft of substance and accordingly dismissed it.

Ajaka and his party challenged the outcome of the election over widespread irregularities and non-compliance with the Electoral Act in the conduct of the exercise by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

A three-member panel of the appellate court reserved judgment in the appeal to a date that would be communicated to parties after the adoption of all their briefs filed on the matter.

Earlier in his submission, Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), while adopting the briefs filed on behalf of INEC, urged the court to dismiss the appeal for lack of merit.

He said there were inconsistencies in the appellants’ case.

Agabi argued that the appeal court had decided that if the grounds of a petition were inconsistent with one another, and were not consistent with the reliefs, it should be struck out.

He also argued that the evidence of the petitioners was grossly insufficient, citing a Supreme Court decision.

The counsel argued that once the evidence called is grossly insufficient, there is no evidence.

He said the petitioners only called 25 witnesses out of the scores listed.