The Supreme Court, on Friday, ordered a member of the House of Representatives representing Akure South/North Federal Constituency of Ondo State, Ifedayo Abegunde, to vacate his seat at the lower chamber of the National Assembly due to his defection from the Labour Party (LP), which sponsored his election to the House of Representatives.
Abegunde defected from the LP to the now defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in 2011.
A panel of seven justices of the apex court headed by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Mahmud Mohammed, held that a legislator’s defection to another party could only be justified if there was a division in the national structure, which incapacitated the party that sponsored his election to function.
In a unanimous judgment, the supreme court held that Abegunde’s defection could not be justified since his excuse of purported division in the Labour Party was not in existence at the national level of the party.
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