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March 31, 2008
A curious power outage in the premises of the Osun State High Court complex venue of the sitting of the Election Petitions Tribunal handling the petition filed against the declaration of Senator Iyiola Omisore of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the winner of the April 21, 2007 senatorial election nearly marred the viewing of a video evidence presented by the petitioner, Hon. Jide Omoworare of the Action Congress (AC) yesterday.

As soon as the tribunal presided over by Justice Hamman Barka delivered its ruling and admitted the video evidence presented by Omoworare for viewing in the open court room, the gadgets needed for showing the content of the video were installed but electricity supply was abruptly cut off.

The development however, did not deter the petitioner who had brought two electricity generating sets along with him to the court. This appliance was soon put into operation and the video evidence was watched by the whole court.

It was seen from the video clips how three persons including an agent of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) described by members of the audience as an incumbent councilor in Ile-Ife (name withheld) thumb-printed ballot papers in favour of the ruling party.

Before the video evidence was admitted as an exhibit, Mr. Wale Afolabi,, counsel to Omoworare had applied to the tribunal to tender the document through its maker, Mr. Precious Chigbue of Gotel Television, Lagos, who covered the April 21, 2007 National Assembly and Presidential elections in Osun State.

Chigbue, a journalist was summoned by the tribunal through a subpoena duces tecum et ad testificandum to give evidence before the tribunal.

This application was objected to by Mr. Wahab Ismail, counsel to Omisore who argued that viewing the video evidence would amount to wasting the precious time of the tribunal.  Interestingly the objection was also adopted by counsel to the Independent National Electoral Commission and the Police.

Surprisingly, electricity supply was restored to the court room as soon as the video viewing session which lasted for about an hour was concluded.

Justice Naron led tribunal adjourned the case of Mrs. Ayo Omidiran of the AC who is challenging the election of honorable Olubunmi Etteh into the House of Representatives for Irewole Federal Constituency.
Earlier attempt by counsel representing Omidiran, Mr. Tope Adebayo to tender original ballot papers from the bar was rejected by the tribunal.  Meanwhile evidence so far submitted to the tribunal clearly shows that election did not take place in three local Government Area, a revelation that has continue to hurt the defense of the former speaker.

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