The Supreme Court has slammed a fine of One Million Naira on the gubernatorial aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2011 governorship election in Akwa Ibom State, Frank Okon in favour of the PDP and Chief Godswill Akpabio.
In a bench ruling, the court consisting of Justices John Fabiyi, Suleiman Galadima, Sylvester Nwuta, Kudorat Kekere-ekun and Inyang Okoro, observed that it was fruitless to have brought up the pre-election matter since Chief Akpabio had served out his tenure as Governor.
The Court also observed that the Supreme Court is not a venue for academic exercises and admonished the Applicant’s Counsel to be careful in the nature of Applications they bring before the Court, as the Court would not tolerate being taken for granted.
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Okon had sought the review of the Supreme Court judgment delivered on March 27, 2015. His Counsel had sought the leave of the Court to move the motion to reverse the earlier judgment. The Court asked the Counsel to the Applicant to explain the benefits of his Application in view of the fact that the tenure in question had expired on May 29, 2015.
Counsel to the Applicant had replied that the grant of the Application would bring justice to Mr Okon as he would be seen to have participated in the re-run primary election of the PDP in 2011. The Court frowned at that line of reasoning and admonished Mr Okon’s Counsel to be more careful in the future and advise his client wisely.
Consequently, the Applicant’s Counsel apologized to the Court and applied to withdraw the motion which was not opposed by Paul Usoro (SAN) Counsel to Chief Akpabio but urged the Court to impose punitive cost against the Applicant. The Court dismissed the Motion to Review and awarded punitive cost of One Million Naira against Okon.
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