In a significant legal development, the Federal High Court in Abuja has issued a restraining order, preventing the Ondo State House of Assembly from impeaching the Deputy Governor, Mr. Lucky Aiyedatiwa, on the grounds of alleged gross misconduct.
The ruling came on Tuesday and was delivered by Justice Emeka Nwite after an ex-parte motion was presented by Aiyedatiwa’s legal counsel, Mr. Kayode Adewusi.
The court’s decision also extends to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, preventing him from nominating a new deputy governor and forwarding the nomination to the legislative assembly for approval. This injunction will remain in effect until the court hears and decides on the substantive matter.
Justice Nwite, in his ruling, emphasized that the interests of justice were a paramount concern. He stated, “Therefore, the application of the applicant succeeds.”
The Deputy Governor, Mr. Lucky Aiyedatiwa, had initiated legal action through a motion on notice marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/1294/2023, naming the Inspector-General of Police and the Department of State Services as respondents.
Additionally, the suit named Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, the Speaker of the Ondo State House of Assembly, the Chief Judge of Ondo State, and the House of Assembly as 1st to 6th respondents respectively.
The application, dated September 21 and filed by Mr. Adelanke Akinrata, sought four specific reliefs.
In a further development, Justice Nwite issued an order of interim injunction, restraining Governor Akeredolu, his agents, servants, or privies from harassing, intimidating, embarrassing, or preventing Mr. Lucky Aiyedatiwa from carrying out the functions of his office as the Deputy Governor of Ondo State.
Justice Nwite granted all the reliefs sought and adjourned the matter until October 9 for a full hearing.
Mr. Aiyedatiwa has also initiated another legal action, marked AK/348/2023, in which he has requested the High Court in Akure to halt the state’s House of Assembly from proceeding with the impeachment proceedings against him. This action will remain in abeyance pending the hearing and determination of the suit filed in the court on Monday.
The legal developments surrounding the Ondo State Deputy Governor’s impeachment have generated significant interest, and these court orders mark a crucial chapter in the ongoing saga.