A former governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Ayo Fayose, on Tuesday appeared before the Ekiti State High Court, Ado Ekiti Division, in a suit filed against him for allegedly owing his former Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Owoseni Ajayi, N900 million in professional fees.
Ajayi, who was Fayose’s AG during his first and second term tenures as Ekiti governor, filed the suit on December 17, 2018.
In the suit with registration number HAD/113/2018, Ajayi said that he, through his law chambers, handled 18 personal cases for Fayose, with each costing N50 million as professional fee, which he alleged the former governor failed to pay for.
He said the cases, which bordered on Fayose’s impeachment in 2006 and the corruption suit filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, among others, were prosecuted between 2006 and 2014.
Ajayi, who prayed the court for “an order compelling Fayose to pay the professional fee without delay,” also sought “an order compelling the defendant (Fayose) to pay 20 per cent interest on the debt from October 5, 2018, and 10 per cent from the day of judgment.”
But the former governor, in his preliminary objection, urged the court to dismiss the case on the premise that it was statute-barred, improperly constituted, and that the claimant failed to comply with the conditions precedent.
During cross-examination, Fayose, who described himself as a full-time politician, admitted in his April 16, 2019 statement on oath that the suit was ill-conceived and lacked the legal validity to file.
On his relationship with the former AG, Fayose said, “Yes, I know him. He did some work for me. Between 2006 and 2017, he worked with me and kept documents for me.”
Ajayi was represented by Bayo Idowu, while the former governor was represented by his counsel, Ahmed Tafa.