The legal efforts to end the crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ogun State has shifted to the Supreme Court with a faction praying the apex court to stay the execution of the Appeal Court’s order of June 25, 2012. The appellants argued that the stay on the execution of the Federal High Court’s judgment was being misinterpreted to cause further chaos in the party.
In a motion on notice filed by Chief Dayo Soremi and two others for the Harmonised Committee, the appellants alleged that the Appeal Court’s order had been “mischievously interpreted” by the party’s National Secretary, Olagunsoye Oyinlola and the state’s Independent Electoral Commission (OGSIEC) in a manner aimed at denying members of the party, who are legitimate candidates in the July 21 Local council election, from participating in the exercise. Justice Charles Archibong of the Federal High Court, Lagos had in a judgment delivered on January 27, 2012, upheld among others, the validity of the Dayo Soremi-led Harmonised Executive Committee as the authentic leadership body of the party in the state, a committee succeeded by the Bayo Dayo-led Executive Committee.
But the Court of Appeal sitting in Lagos in its June 25, 2012, order stayed further execution of the judgment and any contempt proceedings that arose from it, pending the determination of an appeal against the judgment by the PDP and some of its national leaders. The other appellant in the suit is Taiwo Abisekan, while the PDP, the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Abubakar Kawu Baraje, Tajudeen Oladipo, Uche Scondus, Olusola Ige and Senator Monsurudeen Osolake are named as respondents.
The appellants prayed the apex court to restrain the PDP, its agents, officers and members from continuing to act in disobedience of valid and subsisting orders of the Federal High Court and in criminal contempt of the said court under the guise and misinterpretation of the Appeal Court’s order in the case No: CA/L/38m/2012 pending the determination of the appeal. In the application, which was predicated on seven grounds, the appellants argued that the order by the Appeal Court had been misinterpreted by the PDP’s National Secretary, who allegedly directed the OGSIEC to reject the list of candidates for the July 21, 2012 council polls, who emerged from the primaries conducted by the party’s valid state Executive Committee led by Dayo.
They argued that the Appeal Court’s order ought to be stayed since its jurisdiction to make the said order of June 25 was being questioned in their current appeal before the apex court. Meanwhile, the PDP National Secretariat has petitioned the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Muhammed Musdapher, over an alleged plan by the Prince Buruji Kashamu-led faction to obtain a “Black market” orders from Justice Charles Archibong of the Federal High Court, Lagos against former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s within the PDP and the state’s electoral commission (OGSIEC) today.
According to Chairman of the Caretaker Committee of the party in the state, Ireti Oniyide, reliable information available to the party, indicated that this was despite a query Justice Musdapher had earlier issued to Archibong based on a first petition by the Obasanjo’s faction four weeks ago. Oniyide told reporters in Abeokuta yesterday that the petition signed by Oyinlola was aimed at ensuring that “justice is done transparently” and, therefore, called on Musdapher to “prevent Justice Archibong from carrying out his threat on the PDP, OGSIEC and others.”