Read full details of court’s decision on APC’s suit on Ogun guber race

  • A court sitting in Abeokuta has dismissed a suit filed by the ruling party against the opposition, the electoral body and the party’s governorship candidate in Ogun state
  • In its ruling which is in favour of the Peoples Democratic Party, the court also awarded N6 million to the three defendants
  • The money awarded as damages against the All Progressives Congress would be paid to PDP, its Ogun governorship candidate and his running at N2 million each

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The Federal High Court, Abeokuta on Wednesday, October 19, dismissed a suit filed against the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Ladi Adebutu by the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The APC in its suit with number FHC/AB/CS/149/2022 challenged the qualification of Adebutu, the PDP’s governorship candidate and his running mate, Adekunle Akinlade, to contest the 2023 governorship election for alleged double nomination.

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Ogun state, APC, PDP, Dapo Abiodun, Federal High Court
Dapo Abiodun is the incumbent governor of Ogun state.
Photo: Dapo Abiodun
Source: Twitter

In its ruling, the court awarded a total of N6 million cost to Adebutu, Akinlade and the opposition party.

In the defence of Adebutu, Akinlade and the PDP were a senior advocate of Nigeria, Mike Ozekhome who led Amuda-Kannike, Emeka Okpoko, SAN, Isiaka Olagunju, Kadiri Asamah, Clement Onwuenwunor, SAN, and a team of other lawyers.

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Wale Habeeb Ajayi, Esq, was Counsel for the ruling APC.

PDP’s argument on the matter

Ozekhome in his submission urged the court to dismiss the suit in its entirety, notwithstanding the belated notice of discontinuance hurriedly filed by the APC on the morning of their appearance in court.

He argued that the case had come up on four different occasions for argument after issues had been properly joined by all parties and arguments had indeed commenced only on Tuesday, October 18.

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He added that it was after the APC sensed its imminent defeat that suddenly threw in the towel belatedly by filing a notice of discontinuance just this morning – the second day of hearing and argument.

Citing several appellate court decisions, including amongst others, Zoaka V. Buba & Anor (2020), Ogbu V. Nnamchi & Anor (2014), Eronini V. Iheuko (1989), and Ezomo V. AG, Bendel state (1986), Ozekhome urged Justice Joyce Obehi Malik to dismiss the suit in its entirety.

He also prayed the court to award a heavy cost of N3 million against the APC in favour of Adebutu.

According to the SAN, this is to prevent the APC from ever coming back through the back door to file a similar frivolous suit.

In addition, Barrister Wale Habeeb conceded to the order of dismissal as being the proper order to make but conceded only N1 million as the cost of damage.

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The court agreed with Chief Ozekhome and Kannike’s s submissions that the proper order to make in the circumstances of the case was one of outright dismissal and not one of merely striking out the case.

The judge accordingly dismissed the case and awarded N6 million cost in favour of the defendants (N2 million apiece) – to Hon Ladi Adebutu (the PDP’s governorship candidate for Ogun State), his running mate, Hon Adekunle Akinlade, and the PDP.

2023 Elections: List of governors contesting for second term in office and their chances

Legit.ng earlier reported that no less than 11 sitting governors will be contesting for second terms in the 2023 governorship election.

Some of these governors have a high chance of winning their re-election bid with little or no itch.

However, others could face tough challenges in the 2023 poll due to one challenge or the other confronting them in their states.

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2023 elections: “I’ll work against APC”, ruling party’s ex-governor

In other news, the APC in Ogun state will not be getting the support of Former Governor Ibikunle Amosun in the 2023 general elections.

The former Ogun governor said he will be voting for Biyi Otegbeye, the gubernatorial candidate of the African Democratic Congress.

However, Amosun said he will support Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the APC’s presidential candidate, in 2023.

Source: Legit.ng

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