The All Progressives Congress and the Social Democratic Party in Lagos State have applied for leave to appeal the judgement of the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos that the Independent National Electoral Commission should electronically transmit the results of Saturday’s governorship and State House of Assembly elections.
According to the APC, it has deemed it fit to appeal the judgement in the case, in which it was not a party, for the reasons that the judgement delivered also affects it as a sponsor in the same elections as the SDP.
This is following the suit brought before the court by the Labour Party and its governorship candidate, Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, wherein Justice P. O. Lifu ruled that INEC must electronically or digitally transmitted results.
Respondents in the appeal by the APC are LP, Rhodes-Vivour, 40 other chieftains of the party and INEC.
Accordingly, in the suit filed by its counsels at the appellate court, APC is seeking five reliefs to appeal the judgement of the Federal High Court:
“An order granting leave to the applicant to appeal as an interested party against the final decision of the Federal High Court, delivered by Justice Lifu”.
“An order granting a departure from the rules of this court, by permitting and deeming the separate filing of the Notice of Appeal (in terms of the proposed notice and grounds) filed at the Registry of the Appeal Court, rather than the Registry of the court below, as properly filed and served”.
“An order of the court granting a departure of rules of this court regulating the filing of Briefs of Argument and setting the appeal down for hearing on oral argument alone”.
Furthermore, the party is praying for a constitutional order stopping the execution of the judgement by Justice Lifu, pending the hearing and determination of the appeal.
Earlier on, SDP being an interested Party, had approached the court to void the March 8,2023 judgement but the court refused, thereby warranting the application for leave to appeal as a non-joinder.
In the suit between the appellants — SDP and its three chieftains; Olufemi Olaniyi, Christopher Janet and Olatunji Ganiyu; and LP (Rhodes-Vivour and 18 others) — pending before the Court of Appeal, the appellants sought four reliefs:
“An order setting aside the decision of the Federal HighCourt, Lagos, contained in the ruling of Justice Lifu delivered on March 8, 2023, in Suit No: FHC/L/CS/470/ 2023”.
“An order allowing the appeal against the decision of the Federal High Court, Lagos, contained in the ruling of Justice Lifu”.
“An order dismissing the Originating Summons filed in Suit No: FHC/L/CS/370/2023 for lacking in merit and incompetent”.
APC urged the Appeal Court to take judicial notice of the judgement of another High Court sitting in Abuja, in which the first respondent, LP, was also a respondent.
Based on the judgement in the Suit No: FHC/AB/ABJ/CS/1454/2022 between LP and INEC, the electoral commission is at liberty to prescribe the manner in which election results can or ought to be transmitted by virtue of Sections 50(2) and 70(5) of the Electoral Act 2022.