An FCT High Court on Thursday extended an order earlier permitting Victor Giadom to act as the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress to 14 days.
This came on the heels of the Appeal Court’s affirmation of suspension of the National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, on Wednesday.
The decision has deepened the crisis that has hit Nigeria’s ruling party ahead of two governorship elections in Edo and Ondo States.
Mr Giadom announced he had taken over the leadership of the party after Mr Oshiomhole’s suspension, dismissing the party’s announcement of the former Oyo governor, Abiola Ajimobi, as acting chairman.
Mr Giadom has since signaled he would lead the party to reconduct the Edo primary screening. An earlier screening conducted under Mr Oshiomhole disqualified Godwin Obaseki, the incumbent governor.
The judge, Samira Bature, had on March 16 granted the interim order in a motion ex-parte, marked FCT/HC/M/6447/2020, filed by APC National Vice Chairman (North-East), Mustapha Salihu.
Joined as defendants in the motion are Babatunde Ogala, Lanre Issa-Onilu, Waziri Bulama and the party, APC.
Mr Salihu had approached the court, through the exparte motion, seeking for an interim order allowing Mr Giadom to pilot the affairs of the party as acting chairman.
Also to preside at all meetings of the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) pending the decision of the party’s NEC fixed for March 17.
The applicant also sought an interim order restraining the APC and its officers or anyone purporting to act as an officer of the 4th defendant (APC) from preventing or in any way disturbing Mr Giadom from functioning as the acting chairman.
It added that unless otherwise decided by the NEC of the party pending the hearing of the motion on notice.
Counsel for the plaintiffs, Wole Afolabi, approached the court for an extension of the interim order.
Mr Bature granted a two-week extension of the court’s March 16 interim order in line with Rule 3 of the COVID-19 Practice Direction of the FCT High Court.
“Consequent and in line with Rule 3 of the COVID-19 Practice Direction of the FCT High Court, 2020, the order of this court made on the 16th day of March, 2020 is hereby extended for a period of two (2) weeks.
“Application is hereby granted as prayed,” Mrs Bature stated.