The Abuja Court of Appeal has dismissed the request from the Ondo State House of Assembly and its speaker to expedite the hearing of their appeal against the Federal High Court’s order that halted the planned impeachment of the state’s deputy governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa.
The three-member panel of the appellate court ruled on Monday that the House of Assembly‘s application to abridge the time for the hearing lacked merit, as the applicant failed to demonstrate exceptional circumstances justifying such an order.
The Assembly had filed the application on October 20, seeking to hasten the hearing of its appeal. However, the court held that there were no grounds for granting the application. Earlier, the Assembly withdrew an application to extend the time to compile and transmit the record of appeal after objections from Aiyedatiwa’s lawyer.
Aiyedatiwa’s legal counsel, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa ,SAN, argued against the extension of time, contending that the court’s rules did not permit the appellants to seek an extension on behalf of the court’s Registrar. Adegboruwa highlighted that the appellants should independently proceed to compile the record. Following the withdrawal of the application to extend time, the appellants continued to argue for abridging the time for the respondents to file their briefs, a move Aiyedatiwa’s lawyer opposed.
The appeal filed by the Ondo State Assembly and its Speaker challenges the ex-parte orders issued by Justice Emeka Nwite of the Federal High Court, Abuja, on September 26. The orders restrained the Ondo State Governor, Chief Judge, House of Assembly, Speaker, and others from proceeding with the planned impeachment of Aiyedatiwa pending the determination of a pending motion for interlocutory injunctions.