By: Oluwatosin Adesola
The Ondo State High Court, sitting in Akure, presided over by Justice O. Akintan Osadebey today struck out an application by the Ondo state deputy governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, praying the court to restrain the State Chief Judge to set up an investigative panel following an impeachment process initiated by the state House of Assembly.
The deputy governor had brought the application dated 13th October, 2023, asking the high court to interprete section 188 of the 1999 constitution as amended, if the State Chief Judge has power to extend 7days granted by the law to set up an investigative panel to probe the Assembly’s allegations against the Deputy Governor.
However, at the resumed hearing of the case, the Counsel to the Deputy Governor, Barr. Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, SAN, moved to withdraw the application but the Counsel to the State House of Assembly, Barr. Femi Emodamori, did not oppose the withdrawal.
The presiding judge, Justice Osadebe subsequently struck out the application.
Justice Osadebe had last week fined Aiyedatiwa a sum of #200,000 to be paid to the respondents (the State House of Assembly, Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and others) due to absence of the deputy governor’s legal team in the court.
It would also be recalled that on Monday (yesterday) the Ondo State High Court 4 presided over by Justice D.I. Kolawole did not rule on a similar application brought by the lawyer to the Deputy Governor, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, praying the court to interprete section 188 of the 1999 constitution as amended, if the State Chief Judge has power to extend 7days granted by the law to set up an investigative panel to probe the Assembly’s allegations against the Deputy Governor.
Justice Kolawole did not rule on the application after the Counsel to the State House of Assembly, Barr. Femi Emodamori, vehemently opposed it, argued that since Aiyedatiwa had sued the State Chief Judge “for himself and all the Judges of Ondo State High Court” as the 5th Defendant in his Counterclaim, all the High Court Judges are parties to the Counter-Claim and none of them, including Justice D.I Kolawole, can adjudicate the case, because it is a cardinal rule of justice that no one can be a Judge in his own case.
Ruling on the application, Justice Kolawole directed all the parties to maintain the peace and thereafter adjourned the case till November 22, 2023 to enable parties filed relevant processes and documents.