The House of Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Ibadan on Sunday upheld the elections of two Peoples Democratic Party assembly members in Oyo State.
The three-man tribunal led by Justice D.M. Igyuse upheld the elections of Hon Olasunkanmi Babalola (PDP-Egbeda State Constituency) and Hon. Akeem Adeshina (PDP- Iwajowa State Constituency).
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the duo were dragged before the tribunal by their All Progressives Congress opponents in the election to challenge their emergence.
Babalola, who is the Deputy Majority Leader of the assembly, was dragged to the tribunal by Olalekan Usman of the APC, while Adeshina was challenged at the tribunal by Johnson Eroyalesun.
The tribunal dismissed the separate petitions on account that the petitioners could neither prove nor establish their claims of irregularities in the election.
Babalola, who expressed joy after the judgment, said the outcome would further strengthen him in representing his constituents well.
“I feel amazed by the judgment. I don’t have any opponent at all. It is good to challenge so that you can learn how to move forward. I did not allow the case to distract me and I am sure it will make me more focused. It will also help me to know the value of the mandate,” he said.
He promised to ensure that he fulfills his electioneering promises, thanking the people for standing by him and the mandate.
On his part, Adeshina lauded the judgment delivered by the tribunal, saying he emerged from a free, fair and transparent election.
“My mandate is ordained by God. I respect my opponent up till this moment as an uncle. I give glory to God and thank my people. They believed in the mandate they gave me and stood by it. I thank them and promise to fulfill my promises during the campaign,” he said.
Hon. Yusuf Adebisi (PDP- Ibadan South West Constituency II), who was at the tribunal to show solidarity with his colleagues, expressed joy on the judgment.
Adebisi, who is the Deputy Chief Whip, said the judgment would help them to be more focused on delivering the dividends of democracy to their constituents.
“Babalola and I are the youngest in the 9th assembly. We share a lot of things in common and have been doing things together. He gets distracted sometimes over this case and thank God he has been vindicated now. We have been doing fine in our legislative duties and will give our best to our constituents.”