Eleven political parties have asked a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, to stop the scheduled July 24, Local government election in Lagos State, due to the failure of the Lagos State Independent Election Commission (LASIEC) to register them for the Election.
The 11 political parties are: Alliance of Social Democrats; All Grand Alliance Party; Change Advocacy Party; Mega Party of Nigeria; Progressive People’s Alliance; Save Nigeria Congress; We The People’s Nigeria; Young Democratic Party; Advanced Congress of Democrats and Mass Movement of Nigeria.
Joined as defendants/respondents in the suit numbered FHC/L/CS/569/21 are LASIEC; Attorney-General of Lagos State and Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)
The 11 political parties through in their motion Exparte filed before the court, through their Counsel, Adesanmi Afolabi, are seeking an order of interim injunction restraining LASIEC from conducting the local government Election of Lagos State, scheduled to hold on July 24, pending the hearing and determination of it’s pending motion on notice filed on June 18, 2021.
Though, the court presided over by Justice Akintayo Aluko, had fixed the hearing of plaintiffs’ motion on notice for today.
At the resume of proceedings today, the Lagos State Commissioner for Justice and Attorney-General, Moyosore Onigbanjo(SAN) informed the court that they have a notice of preliminary objection, challenging the jurisdiction of court in entertaining the suit and as well filed counter affidavit to the plaintiffs’ originating summons.
But plaintiffs’ counsel, Adesanmi Afolabi, informed the court that he has filed his response to the counter affidavit of the 2nd Defendant, but said he has not been able to serve INEC, the third defendant, as they are evading Service.
In view of the circumstances Afolabi, informed the court that he had filed an exparte application, praying the court to restrain LASIEC from taking any step pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice.
But Onigbanjo vehemently opposed the hearing of plaintiffs’ Exparte motion, saying that such procedure is unknown to law.
Onigbanjo said the procedure adopted by the plaintiff contradicts rule of sequence. He said that motion on notice can not be filed before exparte.
“We are talking about service of the 3rd defendant which is still in issue, coupled with our preliminary objection and the plaintiff is talking about experte order at this stage
I urged my Lord not to fall into this type of temptation”
In response Afolabi, while cited plethora of authorities and pointed out some sections of law that preclude the defendants here to be heard when it comes to an exparte proceedings.
He urged the court to order as prayed in the motion Exparte.
Meanwhile, Justice Aluko has reserves ruling till Monday July 19.