Tribunal Affirms Samuel Ortom’s Victory     

Jime loses to Ortom at the tribunal. 

Funsho Akinwale

The election tribunal sitting in Makurdi on Monday upheld the victory of Governor Samuel Ortom as the winner of the February 23, 2019, governorship election in Benue State.

The petition of the ruling party’s candidate, Emmanuel Jime, was struck out for lacking enough merit to challenge the governor’s victory.

Jime, in his petition, alleged that the sitting governor was not duly elected by the majority of lawful votes.

He cited some areas, including Buruku, Gboko, Guma, Gwer East, Gwer West, Konshisha, Kwande, Logo, Ukum, Ushongo and Vandeikya, to prove his argument.

He, therefore, requested the court to either declare him winner or order INEC to conduct a fresh election in the state.

Justice Henry Olusiyi, while delivering his judgement after cross examination of the two counsels, faulted the testimonies of the petitioner’s witnesses, saying none could substantiate their claims of over-voting and other irregularities alleged.

Before dismissing the case, Justice Henry noted that failure to link the documents tendered in evidence to the petition was as a result of the tribunal's final judgement.

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