Court Adjourns Hearing Of Suit Seeking To Restrain Senator Yayi From Representing Ogun West Till 13 July
A Lagos Federal High Court, Wednesday, adjourned the hearing of the suit seeking to restrain Senator Adeola Olamilekan Solomon, popularly called Yayi, from representing Ogun West Senatorial District of Ogun State, till July 13, 2022.
The adjournment was sequel to an application filed by some constituents of Lagos West Senatorial District, who approached the court and sought to be joined as defendants in the suit filed against the Senator, by some aggrieved members of All Progressive Congress (APC).
The plaintiffs in the suit against Senator Adeola are Barrister Sanni Said; Engineer Giwa Tijani Sheu; Chief Adesoji Adepoju Martins; Mike Okefuna; Olatunbosun Komolafe; Mrs. Sanni Oluwatoyin; Ibrahim Fatai; Bolaji Durojaiye and AbdulKareem Idowu.
While those listed as respondents alongside Yayi are: Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC); the All Progressive Congress (APC) and National Assembly.
It would be recalled that Justice Ambrose Lewis-Allagoa, while granting an Exparte motion numbered FHC/L/CS/822/2022, filed by the Plaintiffs, summoned Senator Yayi and other defendants to show cause, why he should not be restrained from contesting for the seat of Ogun West Senatorial District in the 2023 General election.
Justice Lewis-Allagoa after listening to the Plaintiffs’ counsel, Mr. Adio (SAN) and Yakubu Eleto.
At the resumed hearing of the matter today, Dr. Kemi Pinheiro and Seni Adio both (SANs) leading Yakubu Eleto; Tokunbo Davis and others for the Plaintiffs, while Chief Wole Olanipekun, Babatunde Ogala, and Professor Taiwo Osipitan, all Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) represented Senator Adeola, APC and National Assembly respectively. While Olayinka Kujembola led Mr. Babatunde Rajh-Label, to represent 21 members of Lagos West Senatorial District, as a person seeking to be joined in the suit as Senator Adeola’s Co-defendants.
Addressing the court on the suit, Mr. Kujembola, informed the court of his clients to be joined as co-defendants in the suit. Adding that all parties in the suit have been served with his clients’ application.
Responding, Mr. Pinheiro (SAN) the lead counsel to the plaintiffs admitted being served with the application of the persons seeking to be joined in the suit.
Pinheiro (SAN) however told the court that he intend to respond to the application, and asked the court for a short date.
Also, Chief Olanipekun (SAN) informed the court of the Senator’s application seeking dismissal of the suit brought against him.
Olanipekun (SAN) also told the court that he was surprised that despite the pendency of the suit the plaintiffs went ahead and filed another Exparte application for an order of mandatory injunctions.
The silk while also confirmed to the court of being served with the application persons seeking to be joined as Senator Adeola’s Co-defendants.
He however asked the court a short date to enable him respond to the application of the persons seeking to be joined in the suit.
Counsel to APC, Mr. Ogala (SAN) told the court that he has been served with the Yayi’s application seeking to dismiss the suit, but he was yet to be serve with the Plaintiffs’ processes.
When asked how he got to know about today’s date? The senior lawyer told the court that he became aware of it through newspaper and online reports.
Also, Professor Osipitan (SAN) counsel to the National Assembly, informed the court that the Plaintiffs are yet to serve him with any processes in the suit.
Responding both Ogala and Professor Osipitan’s submissions, counsel to the Plaintiffs, Dr. Pinheiro (SAN) told the court that his clients had served all the processes on APC but he will make sure that the National Assembly are served with the processes.
By the agreement of all parties that the application of persons seeking to be joined as Senator Adeola’s Co-defendants, be first heard before any other applications can be entertained, Justice Lewis-Allagoa, adjourned the matter till July 13, 2022.
The plaintiffs had approached the court for the Exparte Order, pursuant to order 38 Rule 2 of the Federal High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules 2019 and under the court’s inherent jurisdiction.
The plaintiffs through their counsel, Mr. Seni Adio who led Yakubu Eleto, had asked the court for an order of interim injunction restraining APC from submitting the name of Senator Solomon Adeola popularly called Yayi, to the INEC as it’s flagbearer, in the 2023 general election of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, while the Senator is still a serving Senator representing their Senatorial District at the National Assembly, the action they said is in breach of the provisions of Sections 6(6)c, 65 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Article 2, 9 and 20 of the All Progressives Congress Constitution Section 14 (3) of the Federal Character Commission Act and Section 30 of the Electoral Act 2022 pending the hearing and determination of the originating motion.
Justice Lewis-Allagoa after listening to Mr. Adio (SAN), who moved the Plaintiffs’ application dated June 14, 2022, ordered all Senator Solomon Adeola, to appear before the court and show cause why he should not be restrained from participating in the 2023 general elections.
Further hearing of the matter has been fixed for June 22, 2023.
The Plaintiffs in their affidavit in support of the Motion Exparte deposed to by Ijaoba Ismaila, a lawyer in the law firm of Yakubu Eleto Chambers, recently, Senator Solomon Adeola claimed to receive a nomination form to contest the primary election as Senator Representing Ogun West Senatorial District of Ogun State Nigeria while still a serving Senator representing Lagos West at the National Assembly. And that he subsequently contested the primary elections of the APC in Ogun West Senatorial District on May 27, 2022, despite the pendency of this suit while also still a serving Senator in Lagos West Senatorial District.
The deponent stated that the Senator’s acceptance of the nomination form and contesting the primary elections in Ogun West while still, a Senator Representing Lagos West at the National Assembly is a breach of the provisions of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and other enabling statutes regulating the conduct of elections in Nigeria. This he said for the Senator’s acceptance to have contested the election in Ogun West Senatorial District while still a serving Senator representing Lagos West Senatorial District, means abandoning his elected position therefore leaving the people of Lagos West without representation at the National Assembly.
The deponent while citing the Constitution of Nigeria, stated that the Senator has been granting press interviews informing the whole world that he is back to his root and no longer interested in Lagos West. And that by virtue of Section 65 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, to contest election as a Senator in Nigeria, you must be a member of a political party.
He stated that the move to run for election in Ogun West Senatorial District, while still a serving Senator representing Lagos West Senatorial District have no constitutional recognition or validity and it’s a deprival of the rights of people of Lagos West representation in National Assembly. And that due to the declaration of interest to contest election in Ogun West Senatorial District while still a sitting Senator in Lagos West Senatorial District is pure political prostitution and unknown to our laws.
He stated further that the declaration of interest to contest the elections in Ogun West Senatorial district while still a serving Senator representing Lagos West at the National Assembly will deny the people of Lagos West proper representation in Lagos West Senatorial District in Lagos State. And that the Senator has already won the primary election in Ogun West Senatorial District, Ogun State while still a sitting Senator representing Lagos West at the National Assembly based on the unconstitutionally political flintiness and greed.
The deponent stated that since 1999 Senator Solomon Adeola has been representing the Awori people of Lagos State and the same time keeping his vigilance in Ogun West Senatorial District denying indigenes of Lagos West in Lagos State the right to represent themselves at the offices he has been occupying and it left so many citizens unrepresented and the said poor representation is now manifesting itself. And that if he is allowed to go ahead and contest the general elections in Ogun West Senatorial District, Ogun State while still, a serving Senator representing Lagos West Senatorial District in the Senate will rob the plaintiffs/Applicants and many indigenes and citizens of Lagos West Senatorial District the right to be represented at the National Assembly.
He said the acts of the Senator have caused lack of representation to the people of Lagos West at the National Assembly and as such ‘we are like orphans without senatorial representation’ at the National Assembly and they have suffered damages.
He stated that if the APC is not restrained by the Court from submitting the Senator’s name to the INEC and further participating in the forthcoming general elections in Nigeria it will cause a great embarrassment to Nigeria.
The deponent while making an undertake to pay damages to the Senator if at the end of the day this application ought not to have been granted. Also stated that the Senator will not be prejudiced by the grant of this application and that it will be in the interest of justice to grant this application.