The petition filed by Ladi Adebutu against Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, has taken a new twist. The West African Examination Council (WAEC) reversed its previous stance and submitted a certified true copy of Governor Dapo Abiodun’s result to the Ogun State election petition tribunal.
Ladi Adebutu, a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), is seeking the tribunal’s declaration of him as the rightful governor in place of Dapo Abiodun, who represents the All Progressives Congress (APC).
On July 20, an official of WAEC, Olufemi Olaleye, was summoned to appear before the tribunal sitting in Isabo, Abeokuta, the capital of Ogun State, to produce a copy of Governor Abiodun’s certificate as requested by the court. However, Olaleye stated that he didn’t have the certificate with him, explaining that WAEC doesn’t retain duplicates of collected certificates.
Despite this initial response, WAEC later made a U-turn and presented the certified true copy of Governor Dapo Abiodun’s result before the election petition tribunal. This development adds a new dimension to the ongoing legal battle over the gubernatorial election outcome in Ogun State.
“To confirm whether or not somebody took part in the examination, the original certificate given to the candidate will be forwarded to WAEC for verification.”
However, on Friday, another official of the examination council from the Abeokuta office, Fasasi Adetunji Sarafa, appeared at the tribunal to tender what he called a certified true copy of Abiodun’s WAEC result.
Fasasi said he was at the tribunal to represent WAEC based on a subpoena issued at the council’s Lagos headquarters.
The result copy was admitted by the tribunal as RA3, after which the WAEC official was discharged.
While the respondents did not object to the document, counsel to the petitioners, Gordy Uche, objected, saying they would reserve details till final addresses.
“We have a serious objection. Looking on the face of it, this does not look like WAEC result,” Uche stated.