By Kazeem Badmus
THE Hon Rasaq Salinsile-led faction of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the State of Osun has vowed to appeal the judgment of Justice Emmanuel Ayoola of a Federal High Court in Osogbo on the case instituted by 2,517 members of the party to challenge the ward congress held on July 31, 2021 in the state.
Justice Ayoola had on Wednesday ruled on the preliminary objections filled by the respondents, declaring that the court lacks jurisdiction to entertain the case because it is a party matter.
He held that the supreme court had already stated that the court must not interfere with the internal issues of the party unless it falls under Section 87, Sub-section 9 of the Electoral Act as amended.
The judge held that issues relating to the congresses remains domestic affair of political parties that court could not meddle into.
He subsequently struck out the matter for lack of jurisdiction.
However, a chieftain of the party, Barr. Kolapo Alimi who is also the Secretary of a caucus of the party, The Osun Progressive (TOP) said the aggrieved APC members will exploit the option of appeal, adding that judgement cannot stand the test of time.
According to Alimi, the section of the law on which Justice Ayoola based his judgment does not correspond with the case filled by the the APC members.
He said the Section 87 of the Electoral Act is meant for party primaries and not congresses.
Alimi, who spoke on Rave FM’s Frank talk programme yesterday in Osogbo, said: “It is not a new thing in legal practice that when a suit is filed, the respondents, can by way of preliminary objections challenge the jurisdiction of the court.
“We believe in the judiciary and hierarchy of court. This is the court of first instance. We still have right to go on appeal which we are going to do and the supreme court is also there.
“There are plethora of authorities to the effect that when a political party has actually infringed or does not comply with his own rule and guidelines, the court should assume jurisdiction. Section 83 regulates convention and congresses. Section 87 regulates primary.
“We are very sure that that ruling cannot stand the test of time. The court of appeal is there and we are going to explore the option of appeal”.