Court decides defected Govs’ faith May 23

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An Abuja Federal High Court on Monday fixed May 23 for ruling in a suit instituted by the People’s Democratic Party against its five governors who defected to the All Progressives Congress, APC.

The PDP had sued the governors, seeking a court order to declare their seats vacant on account of their defection.

Governors Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara, Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers, Rabiu Kwankwaso of Kano State, Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto State and Murtala Nyako of Adamawa, had on Nov. 26, 2013, left the PDP for the APC.

Justice Gabriel Kolawole fixed the date after hearing the arguments of the respective governors challenging the validity of the hearing notices served on the governors in their Abuja liaison offices.

The PDP counsel, Dr Alex Izinyon (SAN), who filed the suit on behalf of the party, had said it was brought pursuant to Section 177 (c), 221 and 222 (c) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

At the resumed sitting on Monday, Damian Dodo (SAN), who held the brief of Izinyon, prayed the court for leave to regularise the party’s service on the defendants which was granted.

“Service has been duly executed in line with the court order. We have, therefore, come to ask His Lordship for leave to additionally serve the defendants at their Liaison Offices.

“Therefore, our application is not incongruous and invidious as argued by the second to the sixth defendant’s counsel. We, therefore ask the court to discountenance their counter-affidavit and grant our application,” Dodo said.

Five Senior Advocates of Nigeria, leading about 100 other lawyers for the governors, had, in their respective arguments, objected to the PDP’s motion for substituted service.

The Senior Advocates are Akin Olujinmi for Gov. Ahmed, Lateef Fagbemi for Gov. Amaechi, Yusuf Alli for Gov. Kwankwaso, Awa Kalu for Gov. Wamakko and John Baiyeshea for Gov. Nyako.

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