There is disquiet in the All Progressives Congress (APC) In Ondo State over the verdict of the Supreme Court on a case between Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and the first runner up in the September 3rd, 2016 governorship primary election of the party, Segun Abraham.
Abraham is challenging the victory of Akeredolu at the primary elections, alleging that a doctored delegates’ list was used to manipulate the election in favour of Akeredolu.
The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed an appeal by Akeredolu for lack of merit. Akeredolu had, by the appeal, challenged a July 2017 judgment of the Court of Appeal, Abuja, which upheld an order by a Federal High Court in Abuja, granting permission to Olusegun Abraham to serve Akeredolu through substituted means.
The news of the judgement has caused panic among members of the party in the state who believed that Abraham was wining the legal battle.
Loyalists of Abraham stormed the street of Akure to celebrate the Supreme Court judgment.
A top party member who spoke with DAILY POST on condition of anonymity said the case will not affect the mandate of the governor.
He said “I am sure there is nothing coming out of this case. I was involved in the primary election, we used authentic delegate list. Abraham himself did not complain about the list.
“But our party members are scared, the way things are going, if we don’t manage our information strategies very well, some of our uneducated or uninformed members might think Abraham is winning, that, will sure create a big hole in the party.”
Meanwhile, the party has said Akeredolu remains the Governor of the state despite the Supreme Court ruling.
The Director of Media and. Publicity of the party in the state, Steve Otaloro in a statement titled “Akeredolu remains the Governor” said
“We have read the verdict of the Supreme Court to allow the commencement of the hearing of a case filed by one of the aspirants who participated in the 2016 All Progressives Congress(APC) governorship primary in Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Abraham on the outcome of the primary in the court of law
“It has come to our notice that some political almajiris and confusionists have started misinterpreting the apex court’s verdict as outright removal of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu from office and to be replaced with the applicant, Abraham
“It’s unfortunate that this group of people decided to confuse members of our party and the good people of Ondo State in favour of their leader
“Without prejudice to the judgement handed down by the Supreme Court, every member of APC is convinced that the primary was free, fair and transparent.
“It is established that the authentic party register was used at the primary, which was adjudged free, fair and acceptable by the party which would still form the basis for the application of the plaintiff.
“However, we want to urge all members of our party and the good people of Ondo State to remain calm and refused to be confused on the court verdict, which is a mere permission to begin the hearing of the case itself.”