By Ise-Oluwa Ige
The Supreme Court has ordered the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division to hear on merit and without further delay the two-year-old legal tussle on the seat of Ife Federal Constituency of Osun State in the House of Representatives.
The Ife Federal constituency seat currently occupied by Albert Abiodun Adeogun has been a subject of litigation since March 2007 when a pre-election suit was instituted challenging Adeogunâ€™s nomination as candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2007 election.
The order of the apex court given by Justice Aloysius Katsina-Alu followed the striking out of a motion brought by a House of Representatives member, Chief Albert Adeogun, in which he prayed the Supreme Court to stop the Court of Appeal from hearing a suit against him on the 2007 elections.
Adeogun, in the motion asked the Supreme Court to stop the Court of Appeal in Abuja from entertaining the case against him on the ground that his opponent John Fasogbon was being prosecuted by Police for a criminal case of stealing at PDP Headquarters, Abuja and forgery of Certificate of Return in the name of PDP.
However in a dramatic turn on the floor of the apex court, Adeogun withdrew the motion without any explanation and applied that he be allowed to go back to the Appeal court for the substantive case to be heard.
The oral motion for withdrawal moved by Adeogun lawyer, Chief Akin Olujinmi SAN provoked the anger of Prince Lateef Fagbemi SAN counsel to Fasogbon who protested to Supreme Court that Adeogun was approbating and reprobating at the same time in order to frustrate the main case against him.
Fagbemi complained bitterly that Adeogun had come twice to Supreme Court with frivolous motions but lost in addition to several losses at the Court of Appeal and urged the apex court to order the Appeal Court to hear the case expeditiously.
Fagbemi told the Supreme Court that the baseless allegations of stealing and forgery brought by Police against Fasogbon had been dismissed by PDP Headquarters which upon investigation found Fasogbon to be the authentic PDP candidate in the 2007 election.
Akin Olujinmi in his response assured the apex court that his client would no longer file any motion or constitute any impediment to hearing of the substantive case at the Court of Appeal.
While striking out Adeogunâ€™s motion, Justice Katsina Alu warned Chief Olujinmi to adhere strictly to his promise and should not do anything to further jeopardize or frustrate the appeal case at the Court of Appeal.
Justice Katsina Alu who presided over warned in his brief ruling â€œChief Olujinmi, you have given us your words not to do anything to further frustrate the case at the Appeal Court, we take you by your words and if you do anything to the contrary, we will come down heavily on youâ€.
The apex court then ordered the Appeal Court to hear the appeal case on merit.