Ondo State governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu , SAN, has lent his voice to the position of President Muhammadu Buhari that aggrieved members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) can seek redress in court.
Akeredolu’s position followed a media story that some members of the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) have faulted the president’s position.
Speaking on the matter, on Sunday, Governor Akeredolu said the position of President Buhari on the matter cannot be faulted. He added that the position of the NWC members is ‘totally flawed’.
The governor said: “Let me state without any doubt that I stand on a good wicket in arguing that the position of the President, an acknowledge veteran in court disputation, cannot be faulted. The argument of the NWC members is totally flawed.
“The provision of our Party constitution referred to severally and relied upon to support their claim can only be used in law as a SHIELD and not a SWORD.
“Using the provision as a SHIELD will include approaching the court to decline jurisdiction to hear any of the cases if domestic fora for settlement in accordance with the Party constitution was not exhausted before commencement of the suit.
“The court will look into the circumstances of each case to reach a conclusion any which way. In most cases the court will be obligated to inquire into whether or not there was opportunity for exploring the domestic fora for settlement in accordance with the Party constitution.”
According to Governor Akeredolu, the NWC’s position is an invitation to infringe on the constitutional rights of members, adding that there is no provision of the party’s constitution that prohibits members to seek redress in court.
“What our NWC members are canvassing against the President’s position is anarchy; an invitation to infringe on the constitutional rights of our members in a democracy by using the provision of the Party constitution in issue as a SWORD.This will certainly not stand the test of time.
“To the best of my knowledge there is certainly no provision in our Party constitution that prohibits our members from approaching the court if they feel aggrieved on any matter. If any such provision exists it will be UNCONSTITUTIONAL.
He, however, advised the NWC members to seek proper legal advice before taking decisions that are likely to cause more confusion in the party.
“NWC may wish to seek proper legal advice on this before taking actions that would further muddle the waters. “