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BREAKING: Court Strikes Out Suit By Yoruba Group, Ilana Omo Oodua Seeking To Stop Ekiti, Osun Elections

June 14, 2022

The apex body of Yoruba self-determination movement, Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, had in the suit questioned the composition of the constitution.

A Federal High Court Sitting in Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State, has struck out a suit challenging the making and validity of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria for lack of jurisdiction and locus standi.
The apex body of Yoruba self-determination movement, Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, had in the suit questioned the composition of the constitution.

But in his ruling on Tuesday, Justice Banji Ikuewumi dismissed the suit.
The judge ruled on the case despite the fact that the Respondents in the case, the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) were yet to file a defence statement nor appear in court since the inception of the case.
Ikuewumi declared that INEC and AGF were not based nor situated in Ekiti State even though they carry on business in Ado Ekiti; therefore, the case ought to be instituted at the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court.
He also ruled that the six Plantifs who instituted the suit on behalf of Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide did not show sufficient proof that the 1999 constitution of Nigeria and that the conduct of Ekiti Governorship Election affected them in anyway more than it affected other 2million eligible voters in Ekiti State.
Meanwhile, a statement signed by the Communications Secretary of Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, Maxwell Adeleye, stated that the judge ruled that the six Plantiffs were not enough to represent over two million voters in the suit challenging the 1999 constitution neither were they enough to demand for the Ekiti State Governorship Election to be stopped.
Reacting to the ruling, however, lead counsel to Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, Tolu Babaleye, described the verdict as a miscarriage of justice, and vowed to appeal the judgement.
Babaleye said the judge had turned himself to a father Christmas who now strikes out a suit based on Locus Standi when the respondents had not even appeared in court since the inception of the case in April.
 The Abuja Based Constitutional Lawyer said "the case came up this morning for ruling on issue of forum and locus standi raised suo motu by the Hon. Presiding Judge."
He added, “The court came to conclusion that the six defendants cannot represent the over two million voters in Ekiti, that the Claimants have not shown how they are affected more than other Ekiti people if the election is allowed to go on and if the Constitution is invalidated as they prayed for.
"The court also held that INEC and Attorney General of the Federation are not resident in Ekiti, and as such, the Court in Ado Ekiti is not the appropriate forum for the suit to be instituted.
"Based on these reasons, the court struck out the Ilana case pending at Federal High Court Ado Ekiti this morning. I am taking immediate step to get the ruling, study it and determine the next line of action after due consultations with my Clients.
"But to be specific, we shall appeal against this ruling which, in my opinion, is a miscarriage of justice. The judge should not have turned himself to a Father Christmas, he should have transferred this matter to Abuja insted of striking it out. The struggle continues."