The Supreme Court yesterday struck out a suit filed by an aspirant of All Progressives Congress (APC) Dr. Segun Abraham challenging the nomination of Ondo State governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) as the winner of the 2016 governorship primary in the state.
The apex court struck out the suit on the ground that it has been statute barred, having not been filed within the mandatory 14 days allowed by law. Abraham, participated in the primary election but lost to the incumbent governor.
In a ruling delivered by Justice Mohammed Musa Dattijo, the apex court agreed with Akeredolu’s counsel, Chief Akin Olujinmi (SAN), that the suit has been caught by 4th Alteration to the 1999 constitution and has therefore become incompetent in law.
Justice Dattijo held that contrary to 14 days allowed by law for such a court action to be instituted, Abraham filed his case 28 clear days, thereby rendering his own case incompetent for any court to adjudicate upon.
Olujinmi, who appealed ruling of the lower courts on an interlocutory matter drew attention of the Supreme Court to the validity of the case.
He added that the entire suit by the governorship aspirant had died in view of the new law that a pre-election suit must be brought before court within 14 days for it to be valid.
Olujinmi explained that there was noting to adjudicate upon in the matter of Abraham, having become a mere academic exercise that will bring no benefit to the aspirant.
Although counsel to Abraham, Prof Joash Amupitan (SAN) had attempted to convince the apex court that the suit was not a pre-election matter, Justice Dattijo in his ruling, held that the suit was a pre-election matter and had become incompetent since it was not filed within 14 days.
Abraham, who lost the APC nomination to Akeredolu in the September 3, 2016 primary election had dragged both the APC, Akeredolu and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) before a Federal High Court, praying the court to set aside the primary. Abraham alleged that the list of delegates used for the primary election was doctored to give undue advantage to Akeredolu.
He also prayed the court to declare him as the authentic governorship candidate of the APC and that the court should order that he be sworn in as the governor of Ondo State.
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