Justice Lekan Ogunmoye declared this on Wednesday while delivering judgment in the suit filed by the former governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, against the commission.
The trial judge held that Governor Ayodele Fayose had powers to set up a commission of inquiry without the prompting of the state’s House of Assembly.
According to the court, the governor’s action is in line with Section 2 (1) of the Commission of Inquiry Law Cap C10 Laws of Ekiti State.
The judge stated that the governor did not need to consult the House of Assembly or anyone before setting up the commission of inquiry.
Justice Ogunmoye said, “The Executive Governor of the state, in pursuant to the 1999 Constitution as amended, reserved the powers to set up a judicial commission of inquiry.
“The commission has the power to probe any alleged misappropriation of funds and related allegations.
“From the evidence before the court, the former governor had no evidence of bias in the membership of the commission.”
The court, however, agreed that the state’s House of Assembly had no rights to direct the governor to set up the inquiry.
Fayose had, in May this year, constituted a judicial panel, led by a former Acting Chief Judge of the state, Justice Silas Oyewole, to probe Fayemi’s administration over alleged financial misappropriation.
Fayemi had filed a suit seeking an injunction to restrain the state government and the Judicial Commission of Inquiry from going ahead with the exercise.
The former governor, now the Minister of Steel and Solid Minerals, alleged that all the members of the panel were loyalists of the governor, adding that there was no way the panel would be fair to him.
Reacting after the judgment, Fayemi’s counsel, Mr. Akingbade Ogunmoyela, said he wouldn’t know whether or not his client would appeal the judgment.
Counsel for the state government, Mr. Sunday Ashana, said he was happy with the judgment because the court established that the governor had the right to set up the commission.