After a long legal battle, Nigeria’s Supreme Court in a split decision of four to three affirmed the election of Mr Rotimi Akeredolu SAN as Governor of Ondo State. Akeredolu if of the All Progressive Congress (APC).
The majority decision, which was delivered by Justice Emmanuel Agim, upheld Akeredolu’s election on the grounds that the appeal by Olutayo Jegede and the People’s Democratic Party lacked merit since the appellants failed to include Yobe State Governor and chairman caretaker Committee of the All Progressives Congress, Mai Mala Buni, a party in the suit.
The majority decision agreed with the decision of the tribunal that failure of the appellants to include Buni was fatal to their case. However, the minority judgment led by Justice Mary Peter-Odili, held that since APC was the principal and was made a party, there was no need to join Buni in the suit. The majority decision said it was the position of the law that Buni being a sitting Governor cannot be acting Chairman of the APC and was therefore wrong to have submitted the name of Akeredolu to INEC as candidate of the APC.