ONI DRAGS FAYEMI TO S'COURT
In a move to regain his lost seat, former governor of Ekiti State, Chief Segun Oni has gone to the Supreme Court seeking reversal of the October 15, 2010 judgment of an Appeal Court that sacked him from office.
According to a press statement issued by his media aide, Lere Olayinka, Oni whose case was struck out two weeks ago by the Court of Appeal sitting in Ado Ekiti has filed an appeal against the judgment at the apex court.
A five-member panel of judges presided by Justice Tijani Abdullahi had on February 27 dismissed Oni's application seeking the review of the Appeal Court judgment that ousted him from office and declared Dr. Kayode Fayemi of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) governor of Ekiti State. In the appeal filed yesterday by his counsel, Prof. Ben Nwabueze (SAN), he raised five grounds upon which he was challenging the judgment.
Meanwhile, in a swift reaction to this, Ekiti State Commissioner for Information, Mr. Funminiyi Afuye has described Oni and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)'s efforts as futile exercise, saying 'let them go to the Supreme Court, there their political coffin will be finally nailed and they will surely meet their waterloo.'
According to the statement, the counsel said the Court of Appeal erred in law when it held that allegation of bias or likelihood of bias ought to be raised in the course of the proceeding before judgment and not after. The statement reads, 'Allegation of bias or likelihood of bias raises solemn and fundamental issue on the applicant's right to fair hearing guaranteed under Section 36(1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. 'Issues bothering on the denial of applicant's constitutional right to fair hearing can be raised at any stage in the course or after the proceedings complained about,' Oni averred.
In ground three of the appeal, Oni said, 'the learned justices of the Court of Appeal erred in law when they refused to assume jurisdiction to grant the applicant's motion on the basis that the Court of Appeal had determined the matter to finality in the following terms 'in cases of established bias, this court has consistently refused to review its earlier judgment.' See the case of Ukachukwu vs Uba and consequently dismissed the applicant's motion.'