Ondo re-run: Court dismissed case against senator, INEC

A Federal High Court sitting in Akure, Ondo State Capital, has dismissed the application filed by the Candidate of Action Alliance (AA), Mr. Olatunji Felder, seeking to nullify the victory of Senator Nicholas Tofowomo, representing Ondo South District at the National Assembly.

The court also awarded the sum of N200,000 cost against Felder, candidate of the AA.

Felder from Oke-Igbo with Ileoluji/Okeigbo Local Government, took the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to court over the conduct of the supplementary election of March 9 by the commission.

He alleged that INEC did not officially inform him by issuing a 14 days notice before the commission proceeded with the election where he came a distant third after the close of polls in 56 polling units.

On February 23, Tofowomo polled 79,036 to defeat his closest rival, the incumbent Senator, Yele Omogunwa of the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, who scored 51,993, with vote margins of 27,036 and Olatunji Felder of the AA coming behind Omogunwa with third position.

But, the poll was declared inconclusive because the victory margin was less than the total votes cancelled in 56 polling units of four councils estimated at 28,300 votes, which necessitated the supplementary election conducted by INEC.

After the supplementary election, INEC Returning Officer for the district, Prof. Kayode Onifade, declared Tofowomo winner with 81,892 votes against Omogunwa’s 55,610.

But Felder, who was in the third position went to the Federal High Court in Alagbaka, Akure, to challenge the conduct of the supplementary election.

Justice Folasade Olubanjo, however, struck out the case for lack of merit.

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