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Nigeria: Ogun Governorship Election Tribunal Begins Sitting Amidst Tight Security

Hoodlums, suspected to be members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), laid siege to the court’s entrance in the Isabo area of the Ogun State capital.

Hoodlums are making their presence felt despite tight security as the governorship election petition tribunal began sitting on Monday in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

The hoodlums, who are suspected members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), laid siege to the entrance of the court in the Isabo area of the state capital.

To keep them at bay, officers of the various security agencies used their vehicles to block the roads leading to the court.

Context

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Governor Dapo Abiodun of the APC as the election winner with 276,298 votes. But Ladi Adebutu of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who scored 262,383 votes, filed a petition to challenge the returns.

It is unclear if Mr Adebutu will be attending the proceedings as he recently claimed to have fled abroad over threats to his life. But the police said he claimed to have travelled for medical attention when invited over a petition accusing him of inducing voters with ATM credit cards loaded with N10,000 each.

In the petition before the tribunal, Mr Adebutu was marked as first the first petitioner and the PDP as the second petitioner. At the same time, INEC, Mr Abiodun and the APC are the first, second and third respondents.

Drama

The hoodlums, who mostly wore yellow caps, a uniform of Mr Abiodun’s supporters during the campaigns, were all armed with canes.

PREMIUM TIMES reporter witnessed one of the thugs use his cane at the court gate to flog members of the PDP out of the court area.

The security officials, the police, ignored the thugs but denied our correspondent and two other journalists access to the court premises.

After the attack, the PDP withdrew to about 200 metres away from the court.

As of the time of filing this report, the hearing of the matter had started in the courtroom, but security operatives still refused the journalists’ entrance into the court.

Our correspondent had arrived at the court gate at exactly 8:38 a.m.

source

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