The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ogun State during the 2023 general elections, Oladipupo Adebutu, has taken legal action against notable figures, including Attorney General Abubakar Malami, Inspector-General of Police Usman Baba, Director of the State Security Services (SSS) Yusuf Bichi, Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Abdulrasheed Bawa, and Yemi Sanusi, Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state.
G9IJA reports that the lawsuit comes in response to allegations of vote-buying leveled against Adebutu.
The legal proceedings were initiated through an originating motion filed by Adebutu shortly after reports surfaced, revealing police findings of an investigation into the matter. The investigation was prompted by a petition submitted by the Ogun State Chairman of the APC.
According to the interim police report, Adebutu is accused of employing two billion naira to induce voters across the state to support him and the PDP during the March 18th election.
Despite the allegations, Adebutu garnered 262,383 votes, securing second place, while Governor Dapo Abiodun of the APC emerged victorious with 276,298 votes.
The petition filed by the APC chairman on election day alleged that Adebutu distributed ATM cards preloaded with N10,000 to sway voters.
This petition was subsequently investigated by a team led by Mohammed Babakura, a deputy commissioner of police at the Criminal Investigation Department in Abeokuta.
Following the public disclosure of the investigation’s findings, Adebutu swiftly filed his petition in court.
In his plea, he highlighted that the APC had initially written to Malami and the EFCC regarding the matter. Adebutu claimed that the police invitation he received was part of a plot to arrest and divert his attention from prosecuting his election petition against Governor Dapo Abiodun at the election petition tribunal.
Adebutu seeks the court’s intervention to prevent any of the respondents (except the APC chairman) from arresting him. He views such actions as deliberate tactics to obstruct his pursuit of justice in the governorship election dispute.
In the motion, Mr Adebutu is requesting, “A DECLARATION that the invitation of the Applicant for the purpose of arresting and detaining him to prevent him from prosecuting his governorship election petition against the declaration and return of Dapo Abiodun of the All Progressives Congress as the winner of the Ogun governorship election of March 18, 2023, based on the frivolous, baseless, and malicious petition written by the 5th Respondent to the 1st -4th Respondents constitutes a gross violation of the Applicants rights to dignity of his person and his personal liberty, and freedom of movement guaranteed under sections 34(1), 35(1) and 36 of the Constitution of FRN 1999 as amended and articles 5 and 6 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act.”
The politician further requested “ AN ORDER of injunction restraining the 1st – 4th Respondents either by themselves, servant, agents, officers, privies or assigns however described from arresting, detaining, or confirming in any manner whatsoever or howsoever described or infringing on the Applicants Fundamental Human Rights guaranteed under the Chapter IV of the Constitution of FRN 1999 as amended and the Africa Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act based on the frivolous, baseless and malicious petition written by the 5th respondent to the 1st and 4th Respondents against the Applicant aimed at preventing and stopping the applicant from pursuing and prosecuting his governorship election petition against Dapo Abiodun of the APC at the Ogun State Governorship Election Tribunal sitting in Abeokuta, Ogun State.
“Alternatively, AN ORDER of this Honourable Court ordering the 2nd to 4th Respondents to take the statement of the petitioner, interview and released him on self-recognition to enable him to prosecute his Ogun State governorship election petition against Dapo Abiodun and the All-Progressives Congress(APC). And staying further actions against the Applicant pending the determination and conclusion of his governorship election petition against the declaration and return of Dapo Abiodun as the winner of the Ogun State governorship election held on March 18, 2023. AND for such further order or orders as this Honorable Court may deem fit to make in the circumstance.”