Chief Kenneth Gbagi, the governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in the March 18 governorship election in Delta state, had documents admitted as evidence by the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal in Asaba. The three-man panel, led by Chairman Justice C. J. Ahuchaogu, accepted the evidence presented by Gbagi’s lead counsel, Mr. Magaji Ibrahim (SAN), during the tribunal sitting on Saturday.
Ibrahim informed the panel that the election, which resulted in Chief Sheriff Oborevwori of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) being declared governor, was marred by irregularities, electoral malpractices, and non-compliance with the 2022 Electoral Act, among other issues.
The respondents’ counsel indicated that they would raise objections in their final written addresses after their previous attempts to object to the evidence tendered before the tribunal failed.
Ahuchaogu informed the counsel that by allowing the documents to be tendered, they were essentially giving their consent for them to be admitted. He also reminded them that they still had the opportunity to object in their final written addresses, as they had previously stated.
Following arguments from the counsel, Ahuchaogu ruled that the petitioner would still need to prove or establish the significance of the documents, despite their admission as evidence.
“We hereby grant the application for the counsel to tender these documents,” Ahuchaogu said.
The tribunal then adjourned the hearing on the petition and set new dates, July 19 and 20, for its continuation.