An Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Ikeja, Lagos Friday struck out an application challenging James Abiodun Faleke’s victory in the House of Representatives election of February 23.
Mr Faleke, of the All Progressives Congress (APC), is the member representing Ikeja Federal Constituency in the lower chamber.
The tribunal chaired by Justice Kunaza M. Hamidu made the order following a motion by the petitioner, Mutiu Olakunle Okunola, to withdraw his application.
Mr Okunola contested the poll against Faleke on May 23 on the platform of the Peoples Democratic party (PDP).
He dragged Faleke, the APC and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) before the tribunal, praying for a reversal of Faleke’s victory and a declaration that he was the rightful winner of the election.
Okunola, however, recently defected to the APC.
At the resumed hearing of the application Friday, Okunola’s counsel, Owoyemi Ibrahim, told the panel that his client had decided to withdraw the application against all the respondents.
Ibrahim said that in withdrawing the application, he filed a motion pursuant to Section 145(1) of the Electoral Act, 2010, with an 11 paragraph-affidavit deposed to by the petitioner, Okunola.
He prayed the panel to grant the motion.
Responding, counsel to Faleke and the APC, Messrs Kolawole Salami and Ademola Adefolaju, who held the brief of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. Gboyega Oyewole, said their clients would not oppose the petitioner.
Their clients, they added, had filed a nine-paragraph affidavit in response to the motion.
Similarly, INEC’s counsel, Mr Z. S. Makinde, said despite not filing any affidavit, his client did not oppose the motion.
Following their submissions, Justice Hamidu held: “Having read through the petitioner’s motion dated and filed on 30th May, 2019, with the affidavit and written address, and having gone through the first and second respondents’ affidavits, leave is granted to the petitioner to withdraw his motion.
“Consequently, petitioner’s petition against all the respondents is hereby struck out”. [THE NATION]