By Ibraheem Solaudeen.
The Kwara State Election Petition Tribunal has dismissed the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its governorship candidate, Razaq Atunwa seeking the nullification of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq’s election.
According to the petitioners, Governor Abdulrazaq presented a forged certificate in support of his candidature, hence lacked the academic qualification to contest in the election.
However, the tribunal in its ruling today dismissed the petition for lack of merit, stating that the PDP and its candidate failed to prove the allegations beyond reasonable doubt.
The judgement by Justice Bassey Effiong read in part, “Has the petitioner discharged the burden of proof expected of them? From the evidence in this case, the answer is a resounding no.
“We hold that all the evidences presented by the West African Examination Council (WAEC) — which the petitioners had relied upon and subpoenaed —were at variance with the pleadings of the petitioners.
“From all the evidences before us, we hold that the petition lacks merit and is hereby dismissed.”
In his reaction, Governor Abdulrazaq described the ruling as a sweet victory for Kwarans and a triumph of truth over falsehood.
“This judgment affirms the truism that never will falsehood triumph over truth nor evil over good till the end of time — no matter the efforts or public grandstanding of the purveyors of such falsehood.
“For us, the judgment serves as a tonic to go the extra mile to build a polity where players will be motivated only by truth and the dream of serving our people and not by unbridled ambitions”, the governor said in a statement by his media aide, Rafiu Ajakaye.