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Ogun PDP: Court to rule on suit challenging Adebutu’s nomination as guber candidate on Dec 1

Ogun PDP: Court to rule on suit challenging Adebutu’s nomination as guber candidate on Dec 1
November 24
12:57 2022

The federal high court sitting in Abuja has fixed December 1 to deliver its judgment in a suit challenging the nomination of Oladipupo Adebutu as Ogun governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

On Thursday, Inyang Ekwo, the judge, fixed the date after counsel to parties in the suit adopted their written addresses as their briefs of arguments for and against the case.

Two factions of the PDP had conducted parallel primaries that produced Adebutu and Segun Sowunmi as candidates of the party for the 2023 governorship election.

The primary that produced Sowunmi, which was held at the secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Abeokuta, the state capital, was said to have been monitored by officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and members of the Inter-Party Advisory Council of Nigeria (IPAC).

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However, the primary that produced Adebutu, a former member of the house of representatives, was held at the Olusegun Obasanjo presidential library in the state capital.

Jimi Lawal, a governorship candidate, had subsequently approached the court to contest the delegate list that the Sikirulahi Ogundele faction of the party used during the primary which produced Adebutu.

Taiwo Taiwo, judge at the federal high court, had declined to hear a suit by Lawal, challenging the delegates’ list used by the party in the conduct of the primary on May 25.

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Lawal had argued that the delegates were not democratically elected at the ward congresses. However, the trial judge declined to hear the suit on the ground that it lacked jurisdiction.

But on September 30, a three-member panel of the court of appeal held that the federal high court judge (now retired) was wrong to have declined jurisdiction to entertain Lawal’s suit.

SUPREME COURT ASKED FEDERAL HIGH COURT TO HEAR SUIT

On Monday, the supreme court dismissed an appeal brought before it by a PDP faction seeking to affirm Adebutu as the governorship candidate

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In a unanimous judgment delivered by a five-member panel, the apex court held that the Abuja federal high court was wrong to have declined jurisdiction to hear the suit brought before it by Lawal.

The apex court agreed with the judgment of the Abuja court of appeal that the high court has jurisdiction under section 285 of the 1999 constitution and section 84 (14) of the Electoral Act 2022 to hear the pre-election matter.

Consequently, the apex court ordered that the case be remitted to the chief judge of the federal high court for reassignment to another judge who would hear the case on its merit.

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