The controversies surrounding Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s governorship primary in Ogun State have finally come to an end after the Supreme Court dismissed four appeals brought before it by an aspirant, Jimi Lawal, and some ward delegates.
It ruled that the suit filed by Lawal and others challenging the primary that produced Oladipupo Adebutu as guber candidate for the upcoming election have no cause of action.
Leading a five-man panel of Justices, Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, on Tuesday dismissed the appeals following their withdrawals by the respective lawyers.
In one of the appeals, filed by Tayo Olabode against Adebutu, the appeal was dismissed on the ground that the delegates who filed the action lacked the legal right to do so.
It was agreed that the delegates who claimed to have been disenfranchised in the PDP primary that produced Adebutu, cannot initiate any court action against the primary since they were not aspirants in the election.
The apex court held that the law is clear that only an aspirant in a primary election conducted for the purpose of nominating candidates for election, can lawfully challenge the outcome and not any other party member.
In another appeal, that was predicated on the failure to serve originating summon on the defendant, the court held that since the aggrieved defendant participated in the matter from the beginning to the end, the issue of service can no longer take the front burner.
Olabode, who led a team of the ward delegates, had in his suit on behalf of his colleagues, alleged that they were disenfranchised from participating in the governorship primary election.
He specifically requested the court to quash the primary election that produced Adebutu on the ground that unlawful delegates conducted the primary election.
At the day’s proceedings, the Justices put various questions to the lawyers in the appeals, which were answered negatively, determining outcome of the case.
It was unanimously agreed in the open court that notwithstanding the anger of the aggrieved ward delegates, they are not legally permitted to challenge a primary election in which they were not aspirants.
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