The tribunal had on Friday, August 23, sacked Melaye as Kogi West senator and ordered a fresh election –
Dare Olayemi, one of Adeyemi’s supporters, said he (Adeyemi) will win the election and advised Melaye to concentrate on his gubernatorial ambition Supporters of Smart Adeyemi who contested the Kogi West senatorial seat with Senator Dino Melaye have reacted to the tribunal judgment that annulled the former’s election.
The tribunal in an unanimous judgement on Friday, August 23, sacked Melaye as the senator representing Kogi West and ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct a fresh election.
The three-man election tribunal led by Justice A. O. Chijioke agreed with Adeyemi’s objections to Melaye’s purported victory, citing three grounds of irregularities, over-voting and non-compliance with the Electoral Act.
Although Melaye was declared winner of the Kogi West senatorial election with 85,395 votes to 66,902 votes scored by Adeyemi, the tribunal unanimously annulled the election and ordered another election in the senatorial district.
Following the judgement, Adeyemi’s supporters said they were confident that he will soon return to the Senate, The Nation reports. Dare Olayemi, one of Adeyemi’s supporters, said:
“Right now, our leader and APC candidate, Senator Adeyemi, is on his way back to Lokoja and we are commencing preparations for his return to the Senate.
“The PDP Senator he defeated at the tribunal (Senator Dino Melaye) can now concentrate fully on his gubernatorial ambition while Senator Adeyemi prepares to continue his populist representation of the people of Kogi West.
” Olayemi expressed confidence that there is no legitimate way for anyone to beat the APC senatorial candidate in the senatorial district that includes Kabba and Lokoja, the state capital.
“We know where intra-party frictions existed in the area but long before this judgment, we had resolved all outstanding issues and APC’s victory is the only thing that is assured whether the senatorial election is repeated today or next year,” he stated.
Similarly, John Alege, another supporter of Senator Adeyemi, expressed confidence of defeating Melaye in the fresh election.
Alege said APC’s complete dominance of the Kogi state House of Assembly and its immense popularity along with Senator Adeyemi’s antecedents all combine to make the coming election very predictable.
“Senator Adeyemi has patiently waited for what is his and Dino can now concentrate on what will likely turn out to be a doomed gubernatorial run,” he added.
Meanwhile, Melaye has also reacted to the development. On his official Twitter page, he said that there was no cause for alarm over the judgement, adding that his mandate cannot be taken from him.