• Wed. Apr 21st, 2021

Ondo polls: Lawyer Emodamori drags INEC to court over ZLP/Agboola’s candidacy

ByOjuasha

Sep 8, 2020

By: Oluwatosin Adesola

Few weeks to the October 10, 2020 governorship election, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has been dragged before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja by an Akure based legal practitioner, Mr Femi Emmanuel Emodamori, seeking an order of Mandamus, to compel the commission to publish the personal particulars of Hon. Alfred Agboola Ajayi as the Zenith Labour Party (Z.L.P) Governorship candidate.

The lawyer in an exparte motion filed on 7th day of September, 2020 through his counsel, Ifedayo Olanipekun, sought the order in line with section 31(3) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended).

Agboola is also the Deputy Governor of ondo state and the legal practitioner had last week issued a seven day ultimatum to INEC to publish personal particulars of the ZLP candidate or face litigation.

According to the lawyer, “AN ORDER granting leave to the Applicant to apply for Judicial Review by way of Mandamus, to compel the Respondent to publish the personal particulars of Hon. Alfred Agboola Ajayi as the Zenith Labour Party (Z.L.P) Governorship candidate for the Ondo State Governorship Election fixed for 10th October, 2020, in line with section 31(3) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended).

“AND FOR SUCH FURTHER ORDER(S) as this Honourable Court may deem fit to make in the circumstances of this Application.

“GROUNDS UPON WHICH THE RELIEFS ARE SOUGHT: The Respondent (INEC) is under a statutory obligation by virtue of section 31(3) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended), to publish the personal particulars of all the candidates for any election in the constituency where such candidates intend to contest the elections.

“The Respondent (INEC) had published the particulars of all the other candidates for the said Governorship Election on 31st July, 2020 at its Ondo State Headquarters, being the constituency where the candidates intend to contest the election, as stipulated in section 31(3) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended), but has failed or refused to publish those of Hon. Aflred Agboola Ajayi of the Zenith Labour Party (Z.L.P).

Emodamori said in the suit that, “the name of the said Hon. Alfred Agboola Ajayi was listed by the Respondent as No.33 in its Final List of candidates for the Governorship Election, which was published at its Ondo State Headquarters on Friday 21st August, 2020, as the new candidate substituted by Z.L.P for its earlier nominated candidate, Rotimi Benjamin, after the 18th August, 2020 deadline for substitution of candidates as contained in the Respondent’s Guidelines and Timetable for the election.

“The Respondent, in the Final List of Candidates, stated the academic qualification of the said Agboola Ajayi as WASSC, but has failed or refused to his own personal particulars as stipulated by law.

“The Applicant had formally demanded that the Respondent should publish the personal particulars of the said Hon. Afred Agboola Ajayi of the Z.L.P in line with Section 31(3) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended), to enable the Applicant exercise the rights conferred upon him in Section 31(4) & (5) of the Act, but the Respondent still failed or refused to do so.

“This Honourable Court is imbued with the power to compel the Respondent by an order of mandamus to publish the said personal particulars of Hon. Afred Agboola Ajayi, in compliance with the statutory obligation imposed on the Respondent under the said section 31(3) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended).”

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