Ondo lawyer, Emodamori slams two court cases on Aiyedatiwa, Ajulo over State Judiciary, Assembly financial  Autonomy

Following the expiration of the seven (7) day ultimatum which he earlier handed down to the Ondo State Governor, Hon Lucky Aiyedatiwa and the State Attorney-General, Kayode Ajulo, SAN to comply with Section 121 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) which guarantees financial autonomy for the State Judiciary and House of Assembly, an Ondo State Based legal practitioner, Mr Femi Emodamori, has instituted two separate cases in the State High Court by way of mandamus to enforce compliance.

Below is the full text of the suits;

COMMENCEMENT OF LEGAL BATTLE OVER FINANCIAL AUTONOMY FOR ONDO STATE JUDICIARY AND HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY.

Following the expiration of the seven (7) day ultimatum which I earlier handed down to the Ondo State Governor (Lucy Aiyedatiwa) and the State Attorney-General (Kayode Ajulo, SAN) to comply with Section 121 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) which guarantees financial autonomy for the State Judiciary and House of Assembly, I have commenced two cases in the State High Court by way of mandamus to enforce compliance.

In the first case (marked AK/18m/2024) wherein I listed the Governor of Ondo State, the Attorney-General of Ondo State, the Accountant-General of Ondo State, the Chief Judge of Ondo State and the Chief Registrar of Ondo State High Court as the 1st to 5th Respondents respectively, I am seeking the following reliefs:

AN ORDER granting leave to the Applicant to apply for Judicial Review by way of Mandamus, for:

a. A DECLARATION that by virtue of Section 121 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), it is mandatory for the 1st to 3rd Respondents to pay any amount standing to the credit of the Ondo State Judiciary in the State’s Consolidated Revenue Fund directly to the State Judiciary under the management of the 4th and 5th Respondents.

b. A DECLARATION that by virtue of Section 2 (1) of Ondo State 1Judiciary Self-Accounting Law, Cap. 71, Vol. 2, Laws of Ondo State, 2006, it is mandatory for the 3rd Respondent to pay into the Ondo State Judiciary Account in advance for every quarter of the year, that is to say, in January, April, July, and October, monies due to the State Judiciary by way of statutory allocation for recurrent expenditure pro rata for that quarter.

c. A DECLARATION that by virtue of Section 2(2) of Ondo State Judiciary Self-Accounting Law, Cap. 71, Vol. 2, Laws of Ondo State, 2006, it is mandatory for the 3rd Respondent to pay into the Ondo
State Judiciary Account monies due to the Judiciary by way of statutory allocation for capital expenditure as directed by the 1st Respondent after consultation with the 4th Respondent.

d. AN ORDER directing the 1st to 3rd Respondents to henceforth,
commencing not later than Twenty-One (21) days from the judgment of this Court, pay any amount standing to the credit of the Ondo State Judiciary in the State’s Consolidated Revenue Fund directly to the State Judiciary under the management of the 4th and 5th Respondents, in compliance with Section 121 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).

e. AN ORDER directing the 3rd Respondent to henceforth, commencing not later than Twenty-One (21) days from the judgment of this Court, pay into the Ondo State Judiciary Account in advance for every quarter of the year, that is to say, in January, April, July, and October, monies due to the State Judiciary by way of statutory allocation for recurrent expenditure pro rata for that quarter, in compliance with Section 2 (1) of Ondo State Judiciary Self-Accounting Law, Cap. 71, Vol. 2, Laws of Ondo State, 2006.

f. AN ORDER directing the 1st and 3rd Respondents to henceforth, pay
into the Ondo State Judiciary Account monies due to the Judiciary by
way of statutory allocation for her capital expenditure.

g. AN ORDER directing the 1st to 3rd Respondents to make available to
the Applicant in either hard or soft copies, not later than Thirty (30) days from the judgment of this Honourable Court, the certified true copies of documents evidencing payments or release of monies due to the State Judiciary for 2024 as stipulated in Section 121 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) and/or Section 2 (1) & (2) of Ondo State Judiciary Self-Accounting Law, Cap. 71, Vol. 2, Laws of Ondo State, 2006, as ordered by this Court.

Similarly, the second Suit (marked AK/19M/2024) has the Governor of
Ondo State, the State Attorney-General, the Commissioner for Finance, Ondo State (Mrs. Omowumi Isaac), Ondo State House Of Assembly, The Speaker, Ondo State House Of Assembly and The Clerk, Ondo State House Of Assembly as the 1st to 6th Respondents respectively, and I am seeking the following relief:

AN ORDER granting leave to the Applicant to apply for Judicial Review by way of Mandamus, for:

a. A DECLARATION that by virtue of Section 121 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), it is mandatory for the 1st to 3rd Respondents to pay any amount standing to the credit of the 4th Respondent in the State’s Consolidated Revenue Fund directly to her, to be managed, disbursed and accounted for by the 5th and 6th Respondents in tandem with the Approved Budget(s) for the 4th Respondent.

b. A DECLARATION that by virtue of Section 1 (1) & (2) of the Ondo State Legislative Funds Management Law, 2021, it is mandatory for the 1st to 3rd Respondents to pay directly to the
4th Respondent’s Account, monies due to the 4th Respondent by way of statutory allocation for her capital and recurrent expenditure.

c. AN ORDER directing the 1st to 3rd Respondents to henceforth, commencing not later than Twenty-One (21) days from the judgment of this Court, pay any amount standing to the credit
of the 4th Respondent in the State’s Consolidated Revenue Fund and Budgets directly to her, in compliance with Section 121 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).

d. AN ORDER directing the 1st to 3rd Respondents to henceforth, commencing not later than Twenty-One (21) days from the judgment of this Court, pay directly to the 4th Respondent’s Account, monies due to the 4th Respondent by way of statutory allocation for her capital and recurrent expenditure.

e. AN ORDER directing the 1st to 3rd Respondents to make available to the Applicant in either hard or soft copies, not later than Thirty (30) days from the judgment of this Honourable Court, the certified true copies of documents evidencing payments or release of monies due to the 4th Respondent for 2024 to her as stipulated in Section 121 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) and/or Section 1 (1) & (2) of the Ondo State Legislative Funds Management Law, 2021, as ordered by this Honourabe Court.

I am now awaiting dates for the hearing of both cases, and I will surely pursue them to logical conclusions.

E-signed
Femi Emmanuel Emodamori
(12th March, 2024)

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