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Ogun state Governor, Dapo Abiodun has fought back ,saying , his arrest in the United States over credit card fraud and forgery in 1986 is not sufficient grounds for his disqualification by the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Newslife gathered that Abiodun was asked to respond to the allegations leveled against him by a member of the party through a petition .
The petitioner had written the party national chairman , Abdulahi Adamu, citing reasons the governor should not be fielded as the APC candidate for second term in the state .
The petitioner had acussed Abiodun of concealing his criminal records and engaged in forgery of certificates among others .
According to the petitioner , it would be a walk over for any party that came second in the coming election if the APC fields him as it’s candidate .
Reacting to the allegations, Abiodun through his legal team ,Afe Babalola Chambers insisted that the arrest of the governor in the U.S over fraud and forgery in 1986 cannot stop his second term bid.
The petitioner in the petition titled “Re: Petition Agaisnt The Consideration ,Acceptqnce, Approval ,Endorsement and Authorisation Of The Candidature Of HE Prince Adedapo Oluseun Abiodun ,The Incumbent Governor Of Ogun State In The Forthcoming 2022 Governorship Primaries Elections In Ogun State.”
said APC as a political party lacked the power to disqualify him, stressing that only a competent court of law could do so had the statutes of limitations for such matters not passed.
The governor represented by Afe Babalola and Co, Abiodun’s legal team
wrote Abdulahi Adamu, APC chairman, citing section 29(6) of the Electoral Act 2022.
The petition read partly ““An aspirant or candidate will only be disqualified by the court if the false information he gives relates to a constitutional requirement of eligibility. APC is not a court of law. Accordingly, it cannot disqualify our client .”
The embattled governor further argued that the governor’s probable arrest was not a conviction and hence was not answerable to the laws that applied to criminals.
The governor’s legal counsel asserted that even, if Abiodun was convicted in 1986, the Nigerian constitution only disqualifies ex-felons from contesting political offices if their sentence was less than 10 years before the election date.
In any event, assuming but not conceding that our client was even convicted in 1986, he would still not be affected or caught by Section 182 (1) (e) of the CFRN because the CFRN requires that the conviction which would disqualify a person from the position of the governor must have occurred ten years before the date of election to the office.”