Justice Ignatius Agube, of the Court of Appeal says that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is belabouring the courts with their inability to internalize democracy in the party.
Agube who is on the panel examining the controversy of which candidate should hold the party’s ticket for the forthcoming governorship election in Ondo State, also advised the party to stop washing its dirty linen in public.
He was reacting to issues generated during Friday’s proceedings, when two lawyers representing the Ahmed Makarfi and Ali Modu Sheriff factions of the party rose to make conflicting prayers in respect of the appeal filed by the Makarfi camp.
He lamented that the party had failed to internalise democracy within its fold over the years, and that this was the cause of its problems, noting, that ordinarily, the court had no business resolving the internal disputes of political parties.
He said, “I have stressed this fact before now. I said in Kwara and Yobe that there was need for the PDP to internalise democracy.
“If they had resolved their issues internally, they would not be here washing their dirty linen in public. Ordinarily, the courts have no business resolving your internal disputes.”
The party in the state had been at war with itself, ever since INEC dropped the name of Eyitayo Jegede and listed Mr Jimoh Ibrahim as the candidate of the PDP in the forthcoming governorship election scheduled to hold on November 26.
The electoral umpire had based its decision on an order by Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court in Abuja, who had also ruled that Ali Modu Sheriff is the authentic national chairman of the party.
So far, six different appeals have been filed by the Ahmed Makarfi-led faction, Jegede and others seeking an order compelling INEC to drop Ibrahim and reinstate Jegede as the candidate of the party in the state.
Justice Agube’s outburst during Friday’s proceedings was sparked when Adedayo Adeyeye and Ben Obi of the Makarfi faction announced that they were representing the PDP, while another set of people, including Cairo Ojougboh (Modu Sheriff camp) also claimed to be representing the PDP.
The panel headed by Justice Ibrahim Saulawa of the Calabar division of the Court of Appeal, adjourned all pending applications in the appeals to November 7 for hearing.
The panel adjourned despite requests by lawyers to the appellants, including Wole Olanipekun (SAN) and Ahmed Raji (SAN) that their preliminary applications be heard promptly in view of the urgency required by the matter.
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