A move by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to stop the House of Representatives candidate for the Labour Party in Ogo Oluwa/Surulere Federal Constituency, Mr Adesoji Adedeji, from contesting in Saturday’s National Assembly election has suffered a setback.
Justice Uche Nma Agomoh of the Federal High Court, Ibadan division, on Wednesday, dismissed a suit filed by APC and three others seeking the order of the court to disqualify Adedeji Adesoji from participating in the election.
In the suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/1748/22 filed on September 30, APC alongside other plaintiffs, namely Ajani Josiah, Chief Adewale Sunday, Adesiyan Semiu, claimed that Adedeji was nominated by Labour Party and Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) in violation of Sections 30, 34 and 35 of the Electoral Act.
They asked the court for an order to compel the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to bar Adesoji from participating in Saturday’s election, having been purportedly nominated by two parties.
But delivering judgment in the suit, Justice Agomoh said there was no evidence before the court to support the case of the plaintiffs and consequently dismissed the case for being academic, stale and lacking in merit.
The court had earlier struck out an application for extension of time filed and moved by the counsel for the plaintiffs.
Justice Agomoh also awarded a total cost of N100, 000 against APC to be paid N50, 000 each to Adesoji’s counsel, Sunday Aborisade and the lawyer for Labour Party, Kehinde Yekini.
The court also cleared Adedeji Adesoji to contest in Saturday’s election, having been validly nominated by the Labour Party.
APC’s request for a declaration of the court that the Labour Party has no candidate in Saturday’s House of Representatives election and that the name and logo of the party should be struck out of the ballot paper was equally refused by the court.
On the issue of locus standi of the plaintiffs to file the suit raised by Aborisade, the judge agreed with him that those who filed the suit have no business doing as they are not members of the Labour Party.
Justice Agomoh described them as “meddlesome interlopers and busybodies” who engaged themselves in what does not concern them.
On the issue of the suit having been filed out of time, the judge also agreed with Adedeji’s lawyer that pre-election matters are sui generis and that the case should have been filed within 14 days of the occurrence of the action the plaintiffs complained of.