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Court fines Ondo deputy governor N200,000 due to lawyer’s absence



Lucky Aiyedatiwa
In a ruling on Tuesday, the Ondo State High Court in Akure ordered the state deputy governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, to pay a fine of N200,000 because his lawyer failed to appear in court.

Aiyedatiwa’s counsel did not show up in court to argue the motion he filed seeking to prevent the state Chief Judge and the House of Assembly from proceeding with his impeachment while his appeal against the court judgment of October 10, 2023 is still pending.

Additionally, the court directed the deputy governor to pay N50,000 each to the Speaker of the House of Assembly, the Clerk, and the state Chief Judge, who are the third, fourth, fifth, and sixth respondents in the lawsuit.

Judge Justice O. Akintan-Osadebay had previously dismissed Aiyedatiwa’s lawsuit on the grounds that it would be an abuse of the judicial process, considering that he had already filed a similar case at the Federal High Court in Abuja regarding the impeachment.

After the dismissal of the case, Aiyedatiwa filed a notice of appeal along with a request to the court to restrain the Assembly and the Chief Judge from proceeding with the impeachment until his appeal is heard and determined.

However, when the case was called on Tuesday in the Akure court, the Assembly and the state Chief Judge’s lawyers were present, while Aiyedatiwa’s lawyer was absent.

Counsel for the Assembly, Femi Emodamori, informed the court that the injunction motion had been adjourned to Tuesday based on the agreement between both parties, and expressed surprise at the absence of Aiyedatiwa’s counsel, who allegedly did not inform the court about his absence.

Justice O. Akintan-Osadebay adjourned the hearing of the motion until November 7, 2023, and imposed a fine of N200,000 on Aiyedatiwa for wasting the court’s time and that of the other parties.