27th January, 2023
Heavily armed security operatives have barricaded roads leading to the Osun State High Court complex as the Election Petition Tribunal delivers a verdict on the July 16, 2022, governorship election in the state.
Mr. Gboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress (APC), the immediate past governor of the state, had challenged the Independent National Electoral Commission’s declaration of Mr. Ademola Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the winner of the election.
Oyetola and the All Progressives Congress (APC) had on Aug. 5, 2022, filed a petition before the Tribunal in Osogbo challenging the election results from 749 polling units across 10 local government areas, alleging electoral malpractices, especially over-voting.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had declared Mr. Adeleke as the winner of the governorship election, having polled 403, 271 votes against 375,027 polled by Mr. Oyetola.
However, as early 6:00 a.m., a detachment of security personnel had been deployed around the court premises.
All the roads leading to the court were barricaded, thus forcing motorists and pedestrians to take alternate routes.
The entrance to the court premises was also manned by a detachment of heavily armed police personnel.
Newsmen to cover the proceeding as well as other litigants and lawyers with cases were thoroughly screened at the entrance of the court complex before they were allowed in.
There was also a heavy police presence at the All Progressives Congress (APC) party secretariat located along the Osogbo-Gbongan road, as well as Tinubu/Shettima campaign office located in the same area.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) secretariat located along the Biket area was also heavily guarded by armed police officers.
The Police Command in Osun had earlier assured residents of the state of adequate security of lives and property.
The Command’s Spokesperson, SP Yemisi Opalola, in a statement on Thursday in Osogbo, warned troublemakers to steer clear of the state and the court premises.