The Court of Appeal in Abuja has stayed the execution of the judgement of the High Court of Rivers State affirming the appointment of Igo Aguma as the caretaker committee chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state.
A three-man panel of the court, led by Justice Stephen Adah, also stayed further proceedings in the appeal by Abott Ogbobula against the High Court judgment.
On July 8 this year, the Appeal Court overruled the objection by Emeka Etiaba, SAN, (lawyer to Aguma) to the competence of the record of appeal compiled by appellant’s lawyer, Tuduru Ede (SAN), a decision Etiaba appealed at the Supreme Court.
At the mention of the case yesterday, Ede faulted the court documents served on him by the respondent informing him about the appeal filed at the Supreme Court.
Ede argued that the rules of the Court of Appeal do not allow the filling of verifying affidavit of facts. He urged the court to strike out the affidavits filed by the respondents for being incompetent,
Etiaba argued that “by that affidavit filed on July 15, 2020, we have brought to the notice of the court that we have an appeal for a stay of proceedings at the apex court.”
Justice Adah held that the court could not continue with the hearing of the appeal because the first respondent had shown the court that the appeal at the Supreme Court had been entered.
“An affidavit is evidence of proof. The affidavit is showing that an appeal is before the Supreme Court.
“The notice of appeal and other processes have been brought to our notice in respect of the ruling of the court.
“This court cannot continue to go on with this matter since we don’t know the decision of the Supreme Court on the appeal, “, Justice Adah said.
He then proceeded to make an order adjourning the hearing of the appeal by Ogbobla indefinitely pending the hearing and determination of the appeal at the Supreme Court.
Justice Adah equally ordered the stay of the execution of the judgment of the High Court of Rivers State.
But, Etiaba said the order staying the execution of judgement would be challenged at the Supreme Court on the grounds that there were declarative reliefs granted by the High Court, which could not be stayed.
Aguma, however, insisted that the Court of Appeal never gave any ruling or orders staying the declaratory reliefs granted him by the lower court as the acting chairman of the party.
Aguma, in a statement by his Media Adviser, Livingstone Wechie, urged members of the public to ignore the claims by anti-Aguma forces in the party that the appeal court, which sat on the matter on Thursday, ordered for a stay of execution.
Wechie said: “The Court of Appeal declined jurisdiction and disqualified itself entirely from the Appeal in Isaac Ogbobula v. Igo Aguma and others.
It took judicial notice of an appeal filed by the first respondent Applicant Igo Aguma against the rulings of the Appeal Court on July 8, 2020, which was brought via a motion by Emeka Etiaba, SAN.”