BY OLA AJAYI
IBADAN – POSSIBILITY of recognising Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Oyo State brightened yesterday as a Court of Appeal in Ibadan dismissed the motion by appellants for abridgement of time for parties to file their briefs and accelerated hearing of the case.
Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, had prayed the court to grant him an order to abridge the time because of the urgency that the case demanded.
Also, the appellate court granted orders for amendment of records of proceeding and permission to allow the respondents use exhibits B and C as parts of the records of the court.
Exhibit B is a handwritten note taken during the proceeding in a lower court. The motion was filed by Prince Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, counsel to the State Chairman of the PDP, Chief Dejo Afolabi.
Elder Wole Oyelese, Senator Lekan Balogun, Azeem Gbolarumi and 34 others had gone to the Appeal Court to challenge the lifting of a restraining order imposed on INEC and PDP from recognising Governor Akala and other candidates of the party.
The three-man panel which comprised Justices Stanley Alagoa, Sidi Bage and Modupe Fasanmi, held that the additional records would be germane in the course of the proceedings.
But Justice Alagoa, the Presiding Justice, refused to the order to include photocopies of some national newspapers as part of the records of the court.
He said they were not certified true copies and also not the original copies of the papers.
On the argument by Mr. Akeredolu, SAN, that Prince Fagbemi should not have been the one to file the application for amending the records of court having been earlier excused by a lower court due to the withdrawal of the suit against his client, the court ruled that he was at liberty to bring the additional record since he was a party.
According to the court, “The applicants are challenging he completeness of the records of the court. What he sought to be amending is simply an order to add exhibits B and C and the leave is hereby granted to use exhibits B and C as supplementary records.
Earlier, there was a heated argument between Akeredolu on one side and Chief Richard Akinjide (SAN), Akeem Afolabi on the other side.
They appeared for Governor Akala and PDP respectively.
All the arguments by Akeredolu that time was of essence and that the case be given accelerated hearing within two days for both parties to file their briefs were rejected by the court because of the Easter holiday.
Chief Akinjide and Afolabi had argued that the motion should be heard because the day had been fixed for hearing and that the court would be wrong to go ahead and hear the case.