Tue. Aug 9th, 2022

Court Strikeouts Suit Against Lagos’ LG Elections

A Lagos Federal High Court, today, dismissed a suit filed against the recent held election into 20 Local Government Areas (LGAs) and 37 Local council Development Areas (LCDAs) in Lagos State, for lacking in merit.

Justice Akintayo Aluko, who presided over the court in a judgment to the suit filed by the Plaintiffs and the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission  (LASIEC) and the State’s House of Assembly, while citing plethoras of authorites, upheld the objection raised by the defendant in the suit.

In striking out the suit, Justice Aluko held that; “the subject matter in the Plaintiffs’ case is a general interest common to all registered members of the public in Lagas State particularly on right to yote or be voted for. The right to vote or be voted for is a general public interest common to all registered members in the state and not peculiar, personal or private to the Plaintiffs.

“Furthermore, the Plaintiffs’ affidavit evidence did not reveal which of the local government Areas they come from or whether their wards fall within the alleged balkanised 20 local Government Areas or 37 Local Council Development Areas. There is no credible evidence to show that the Plaintiffs ave registered voters or restdents in the state. 

“This goes to affect their locus standi and also establishing the fact that the rights to vote and be voted for which the Plaintiffs seek to protect is not their personal, or private right but rather a public right common to all.

“Coming from the foregoing, I hold the considered view that the reliefs of the Plaintiffs as endorsed on the originating summons are not covered by the provision of section 251(1) of the Constitution and that upon examination of the claims and affidavit of the Plaintiffs, they do not have the requisite locus standi or legal capacity the institute this suit. 

“As a result of this, the lone issue regarding the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the instant action is resolved in favour of the objectors against the Plaintiffs. 

“Consequently, I hold that there is merit and substance in the objections raised vide the notices of preliminary objection. 

“The preliminary objections of the Defendants hereby succeed and are sustained. This suit is accordingly struck out. I make no order as to cost”. 

The Plaintiffs in the suit, Gbenga Agoro; Honourable Hassan Adeyemi; Mrs. Fausat Olayemi; Honourable Raji Quam Ogbe; Mr. Rasheed Olamilekan; Mr. Lukman Jimoh; Mr. Idowu Kareem; Pastor Abiodun Adeyemi and Mr. Sanni Said, through their counsel, Abdulmalik Bello, had asked the court for an order of perpetual injunction restraining LASIEC from holding or conducting the scheduled Local council elections scheduled far the 24th July, 2024 on the 20 local Government Areas and 37 Local Council Development Areas or any other number of Local Geverament Areas in excess af the 20 constitutionally created and validly recognised Local Government Areas. 

“An Order of perpetual injunction restraining LASIEC from organising or waderteking to hold local councillorship elections In excess af the legally recognised 245 wards in Lagos Stote, 

“An order of perpetual injunction restraining the Lagos State House of Assembly from further making laws inconsistent with the constitution on the basis of 20 iocal Government Areas and 37 Local Council Development Areas or ony other number of Local Government Areos in excess of the 20 constitutionally created and validily recognised Local Government Areas. 

“An order quashing any law previously made and about to be made by the Lagos State House of Assembly inconsistent with the provision of the constitution of the Federat Republic of Nigeric on the basis of 20 Local Government Areas and 37 Local Cauncit Development Areas or any other number of Local Government Areos in excess of the 20 constitutionally crented and validly recognised Loca! Gevernment Areas.

“An order of perpetual injunction restraining the LASIEC from organising, undertaking and or supervising local council elections in Lagos State on the basis of 20 Local Government Areas and 37 Local Councit Development Areas or any other number of Local Government Areas in excess of the 20 constitutionally created and validly recognised Local Government Areas and or on the bosis of more than the 245 legally recognised wards in Lagas State. 

But the defendants through their counsel, Mr. Kemi Pinheiro (SAN) and the State’s Attorney-General, Moyosore Monsuru Onigbanjo (SAN), had asked the court to Strike our or dismiss the suit, for lacking in merit and that the Plaintiffs have no rights whatsoever to institute same.