The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) suit which sought to disqualify Senator Adetokunbo Abiru of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from continuing to represent the Lagos East Senatorial District in the Senate.
It upheld the arguments of Kemi Pinheiro (SAN) for Mr Abiru and Abiodun Owonikoko (SAN) for the APC that the appeal lacked merit.
The apex court also awarded the cost of N1 million against the appellants – the PDP and its candidate, Babatunde Gbadamosi – in favour of each of the respondents.
Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa (SAN) represented Mr Gbadamosi and the PDP.
Tokunbo Abiru won the last December 5 senatorial bye-election by a landslide, polling 89,204 votes against Mr Gbadamosi’s 11,257 votes.
Mr Gbadamosi and the PDP challenged Mr Abiru’s eligibility to contest the election, raising, among others, allegations of double voter registration, residency and indigeneship.
After losing at the lower and appellate courts, the appellants approached the apex court, where Abiru and the APC also filed a Cross-Appeal.
Justice Adamu Jauro, in a lead judgement, resolved the first issue against the appellant, adding that, the failure of the appellant to disclose the date of publication before the trial court is fatal to their case as that fact is material to the determination of the case.
As a result, the court held that the case at the trial court was not competent and consequently dismissed the same.
Following the resolution of issue one against the appellant, the appeal was held to be lacking in merit and the same was therefore dismissed.
Having dismissed the appeal, the Supreme Court held that there was no reason to dabble into the cross-appeal, and dismissed the same.
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