Thugs loyal to the Peoples Democratic Party on Tuesday beat up witnesses who testified for the All Progressives Congress before the National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal in Ekiti State to stupor.
The tribunal was hearing a petition filed by the APC senatorial candidate for Ekiti Central, Gbenga Olofin, against the return of Senator Fatimat Rasaki of the PDP.
Olofin had closed his case at the tribunal after calling eight witnesses while his opponent, Mrs. Rasaki, opened her defence by being the first witness to testify in support of her election.
The Tribunal Chairman, Justice A. N. Erabor, on Tuesday admitted the voter register as an evidence after listening to a counter-argument between the petitioner’s counsel, Yemi George and Respondent’s lawyer, Jude Ogodi.
But the suspected hoodlums believed to be loyal to the respondent who had waited outside the courtroom as the proceedings were going on unleashed terror on the petitioner’s witnesses and supporters.
The suspected thugs also laid ambush at the gate of the complex looking for APC members and supporters who fled in different direction.
Justice Erabor, expressed the dismay of the panel with the violence warning parties that the tribunal would no longer tolerate such in the future.
Olofin expressed happiness on the admissibility of the voter register and other documents saying that would serve the cause of justice for the two contending parties.
He, however, regretted the attacks on his witnesses and supporters describing it as barbaric, adding that it could scare other witnesses from giving evidence at the tribunal.