PDP Crisis: Judge faults suit against CJ, Justice Abang


Justice Olukayode Adeniyi of the High Court of Abuja, Tuesday, expressed dissatisfaction with a suit filed by the Senator Ahmed Markarfi-led faction of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, against the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta, and another judge in the Abuja Division of the court, Justice Okon Abang.

The Makarfi-led faction of the PDP had filed the suit with respect to the ongoing leadership crisis rocking the party. The suit marked, CV/2239/2016, seeks among others, the enforcement of the party’s right to fair hearing. The party blamed Justices Auta and Abang for the various conflicting decisions given in relation to the leadership crisis in the party. The plaintiff said it was wrong for Justice Abang to assume jurisdiction on cases relating to the party’s leadership crisis when a judge of the court’s Port Harcourt division was already hearing similar cases. But Justice Abang had in one of his rulings said that the PDP leadership crisis case was first assigned to him before the case on the same subject matter was filed before the Port Harcourt Division.

The plaintiff is praying among others, for an order setting aside all the decisions and orders made so far by Justice Abang in the cases on the PDP leadership crisis. But Justice Adeniyi, who was to hear the case, faulted the rationale behind the suit filed on behalf of the plaintiff by Mr. Ken Njemanze (SAN). The judge said such case was not one that ought to be filed in court. “I think before the last date the plaintiff would have had a rethink and withdrawn it. “I must express my reservation that this is not the kind of suit that should be filed in court. I do not know what this suit seeks to achieve,” the judge said.

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Justice Auta’s lawyer, Mr. James Igwe (SAN), agreed with Justice Adeniyi’s observation. He said he had expressed similar view to Njemanze. He, however, said he has filed all necessary documents, including a notice of preliminary objection, to the suit and that he was ready for whichever decision taken by the plaintiff at the end of the day. Justice Abang, who had also filed other processes, including a notice of preliminary objection against the suit, was represented by his lawyer, Aliyu Ahmed, on Tuesday.


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