The minority judgment delivered by the Supreme Court of Nigeria on the Ondo state governorship election has thrown up some issues. Some law experts are warning the APC of impending danger. Among such legal experts is the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Chief Festus Keyamo.
Keyamo a Senior Advocate of Nigeria opined that governor Rotimi Akeredolu narrowly escaped been sacked because of a little technicality. As reported by the Premium Times, Keyamo said “the little technical point that saved Gov AKEREDOLU was that Jegede failed to join GOV. Mai Mala Buni in the suit”.
Similarly, another lawyer, Mr Kayode Ajulo has also warned that the APC risk not producing valid governorship and Presidential candidates in 2023. The way out of the situation that the APC has found itself is to find a way to remove (or get him to resign) Governor Mia Mala Buni as Caretaker Committee Chairman of the party.
Some of us had raised objections to the appointment of Governor Buni to that position. We quarried how a sitting Governor could still be in charge of the day to day running of a political party. To govern a state like Yobe is more than enough for the Governor to be busy with. But we were not taken seriously.
Some people had encouraged Comrade Adams Aliu Oshiomhole to challenge his removal in court. Despite such promptings, the sacked national chairman insisted that he did not want to go against the President. He opted to let the sleeping dog lie. He allowed room for peace to return to the party. I was among those who wanted him to go to court.
I believed he was badly treated. If he had gone to court to challenge his removal with due diligence, he had high chances of victory.
One thing that the Supreme Court judgment on the Ondo election has proven is that the action of the APC National Executive Committee was highly contentious in law. It had loopholes. If Oshiomhole had gone to court, the legality or otherwise of the NEC meeting that was convened to remove him from office would have been determined. It is an issue that the former national chairman would have allowed the courts to settle. At least, for the sack of posterity.
Some of us still insist that the APC NEC meeting was not properly called. If Oshiomhole had gone to court, the debate about whether Buni should conduct party congresses or not may have arise. And I think that may have done the APC a lot of good. If the current crisis brewing in the party is not well handled, the APC may be heading for a long drawn political turmoil.