By Mumini AbdulKareem
The Kwara State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party has petitioned the High Commissioner of the United Kingdom and Ambassador of the United States in Nigeria over the Kwara State House of Assembly’s refusal to inaugurate a member-elect, Raheem Agboola, a member of the party.
In the separate petitions on Friday, the Party alleged that the Speaker, Salihu Yakubu Danladi, acting on the direct order of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, refused to swear in Agboola as the honourable representing Ilorin South Constituency at the Chamber, despite court order and Certificate of Return issued by the country’s electoral body.
The petitions were signed on behalf of the Party by its legal adviser, O.M Aborisade.
The Party said, “We present this petition before you as a law abiding, responsive and responsible political party for your kind consideration, intervention and resolution of the deliberate political impasse created by the trio of the Governor of Kwara State (Alhaji Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq), the Speaker of the House of Assembly and the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice (Mr. Sulyman Jawondo) in our peaceful state of harmony, Kwara State.
“Our Party’s candidate in the 2019 general elections into the Kwara State House of Assembly, Ilorin South Constituency (Hon. Raheem Jimoh Agboola) was adjudged the lawful candidate and winner by the Kwara State Election Petition Tribunal and the Court of Appeal Ilorin Division respectively and has been issued the Certificate of return by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
“Sadly and regrettably, on the advice of the Attorney General of Kwara State to the Governor and on the direct instructions of the Governor to the Speaker of the Kwara State House of Assembly, the Speaker directed and warned the Clerk of the House of Assembly not to accept the Certificate of Return issued by the INEC on the orders of the Court of Appeal from our candidate Hon. Raheem Jimoh Agboola, for the purpose of his being sworn in as a member of the house. It must be noted that the Court of Appeal in its judgment in December 2019, ruled and nullified the Certificate of Return earlier issued by INEC to the present illegal occupant of Ilorin South Constituency seat in the House of Assembly.
“Under the Electoral law in Nigeria, issues and conflicts arising out of electoral matters into the State House of Assembly and the National Assembly terminate at the Court of Appeal therefore decisions, orders and judgments pronounced by the Court of Appeal on such matters is final and not appellable to any other Court in Nigeria.”
The Party in the petition urged the international community to intervene to stop “further draconian and undemocratic rule by the Executive and Legislative arms of government in Kwara State”.
Recall that the Speaker had refused to swear-in Agboola the only PDP member-elect even after securing victory at Appeal Court and collecting Certificate of Return from Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The Court of Appeal in December 2019 declared Agboola as the winner of the Ilorin South constituency election, thereby nullifying victory of Hassan Abdulazeez.