Obafemi Hamzat, the Deputy Governor of Lagos State, made an appearance at the Court of Appeal, Lagos Division, on Tuesday for the appeal hearing regarding the verdict of the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal. The tribunal had previously affirmed the re-election of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on September 25, 2023.
In a unanimous decision, the three-man panel overseeing the case dismissed two petitions filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and their governorship candidate, Olajide Adediran, as well as the petition of the Labour Party and their governorship candidate, Rhodes-Vivour.
Justice Mikail Abdullahi, reading the judgment on behalf of the three-man panel, held that the PDP's petition lacked merit and was subsequently dismissed. He stated, "I affirm the election and return of Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu as the duly elected governor of Lagos state."
The tribunal also addressed the question of its competence and jurisdiction to hear the petition, with Justice Abdullahi affirming its validity, having been previously resolved during the preliminary objection stage.
Another matter considered by the tribunal was whether Sanwo-Olu and his deputy, Obafemi Hamzat, were validly nominated by their party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), to contest the elections. The tribunal referenced constitutional and electoral provisions and established precedents, concluding that this was a pre-election issue unrelated to the conduct of the contested polls.
Furthermore, the tribunal ruled that the petitioners were not members of the 4th respondent, the APC, and therefore lacked the standing to challenge the party's primaries that nominated both candidates.