A former Ekiti State Governor Segun Oni yesterday got the nod of a Federal High in Abuja to serve processes through substituted means on the state’s Governor-elect Kayode Fayemi on a suit challenging his eligibility to contest the last governorship election.
By substituted means, Justice Nnamdi Dimgba, in an ex-parte ruling, said the originating documents, filed by Oni, should be served on Fayemi through the head office of their party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), in Abuja.
Oni had alleged, in his motion ex parte, that Fayemi was evading service.
He sought the court’s permission to serve him through substituted means.
Justice Dimgba, after granting Oni’s prayer, adjourned till September 5 for a report of service.
Oni averred that Fayemi was not qualified to participate in APC’s primary on May 12 on the grounds that he did not resign his appointment as Minister Mines and Steel Development, in line with the law.
Oni also claimed, among others, that Fayemi won the APC’s primary on May 12 while he was still the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, a position he did not officially resign from until May 30.
The former governor queried Fayemi’s eligibility for the primary on the strength of his (Fayemi) purported indictment by the Justice Oyewole Judicial Panel of Enquiry, set up by the state government to probe Fayemi’s tenure.
The plaintiff, who came second in the primary with 481 votes behind Fayemi’s 941, prayed the court to declare him the valid flag bearer of the party.
Oni also sought “a declaration that the claimant (Oni), having scored 481 votes, which is the majority of lawful and valid votes at the second defendant’s (APC’s) May 12 governorship primary for the purpose of determining the second defendant’s candidate for the July 14 election for the office of governor of Ekiti State, is the person that was validly nominated by the 2nd defendant for the 14th July, 2018 election for the office of Governor, Ekiti State”.
He also prayed the court to determine “whether by virtue of APC’s constitution and particularly Articles 2 and 5 of All Progressives’ Congress 2014 Guidelines for the nomination of candidates for public office, as applicable to the APC governorship primary conducted on May 12, the first defendant, being a serving member of the Federal Executive and Federal Minister of Solid Minerals, Mines and Steel Development, having not resigned his appointment as a member of Federal Executive and Minister of Solid Mineral, Mines and Steel Development, at all or at least 30 days to the primary of May 12, was qualified to contest and participate in the said APC governorship primary of May 12 as an aspirant in that election”.
He urged the court to determine “whether by virtue of APC Constitution and particularly Articles 2 and 5 of APC 2014 Guidelines for the nomination of candidates for public office as applicable to the APC governorship primary conducted on May 12 at Damilek Event Centre, Ado-Ekiti, for the purpose of determining or nominating the second defendant candidate for the July 12 Ekiti State governorship election, the first defendant, having been indicted by Hon. Justice Oyewole Judicial Panel of Enquiry, was qualified to contest and participate in the APC governorship primary of May 12, as an aspirant in that election.”