Supreme court sacks Ondo lawmaker
By Jubril Bada
The Supreme Court yesterday upheld the removal of a member of the Ondo State House of Assembly, representing Okitipupa constituency II, Mr. Sina Akinwumi.
The Apex court dismissed an appeal filed by Akinwumi and thereafter upheld the judgement of the Court of Appeal sitting in Akure that set aside the election of the All Progressives Congress lawmaker.
The Supreme Court unanimously validated the issuance of the Certificate of Return to Mr James Ololade-Gbegudu by the Independent National Electoral Commission,INEC, as the authentic lawmaker representing the constituency, for winning the APC primary.
The Apex Court ordered the Speaker of the Assembly (Bamidele Oloyelogun) and the Clerk to immediately swear-in Gbegudu as the new lawmaker for the constituency.
It would be recalled that Court of Appeal sitting in Akure upheld the judgement of the State High Court that set aside the election of Akinwunmi.
The Appellate Court unanimously validated the INEC issuance of the Certificate of Return to Ololade-Gbegudu by INEC as the authentic lawmaker representing the constituency, for winning the APC primary while the commission had withdrawn the earlier one issued to Akinwunmi.
Also, the Ondo State High Court had on May 15, 2019 declared Ololade-Gbegudu as the winner of the APC State Assembly primary conducted on October 5, last year.
Ololade-Gbegudu had approached the court through his counsel, Mr Femi Emodamori, to seek an order to compel the party and INEC to recognize him as the authentic APC candidate for the constituency and not Akinwunmi, having won the party’s primary conducted on October 5, last year.
Delivering a judgement that lasted more than two hours on May 15, 2019, Justice Olabode Adegbehingbe of the Ondo state High Court held that from all evidence laid before the court by officials of the APC, documentary evidence including the primary election result sheet adduced by Counsel to the plaintiff, Mr Femi Emodamori, showed that Ololade-Gbegudu actually won the APC assembly ticket.