The Justice Ibrahim Saulawa-led panel of the Court of Appeal in Abuja, on Friday adjourned indefinitely the judgment on the appeal filed by Mr. Eyitayo Jegede, the substituted governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the forthcoming election in Ondo State.
Jegede, who belongs to the Ahmed Makarfi-led faction of the PDP, is by his appeal challenging his replacement by the Independent National Electoral Commission with Jimoh Ibrahim of Ali Modu Sheriff-led faction of the PDP as the party’s governorship candidate for the election scheduled to take place on November 26.
The Saulawa panel also adjourned all other pending appeals, including one filed by Makarfi, relating to the dispute over the governorship ticket of the PDP in the forthcoming poll.
Justice Saulawa said his panel was suspending the delivering of the judgments to await the decision of the Supreme Court on whether or not the appeal court was bound to stay proceedings in view of the interlocutory appeals nine of the respondents loyal to Ibrahim had filed before the Supreme Court.
The nine respondents led by Mr. Biyi Poroye, who filed the motion before the Supreme Court, are state officials of the Sheriff-led faction of the PDP in the South-West zone.
Justice Saulawa also cited the motion filed by the respondents before the Supreme Court on Thursday, asking for an order of the apex court to disband the Saulawa panel and take disciplinary actions against its members for insisting to hear the appeal in defiance to established judicial principles on stay of proceedings.
Justice Saulawa said although his panel was of the view that the proceedings in the cases should continue “having come this far,” but that it was more reasonable to suspend the proceedings, particularly when members of the panel had now been made parties to the fresh motion before the Supreme Court.
“We hereby rule that this instant appeal and other appeals slated for today for judgments and ruling stand adjourned sine die to await the outcome of the Supreme Court,” Justice Saulawa said.
The panel had between Wednesday and Friday heard the appeals filed by Jegede and Makarfi despite pending appeals against the panel’s November 10 ruling granting them (Jegede and Makarfi) leave to file their appeal in respect of the dispute.