By Sunday Ejike Benjamin with agency report
A Federal High Court in Abuja yesterday slated May 23, 2014 for ruling in a suit instituted by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) against its five governors who defected to the opposition All Progressive Party (APC).
PDP had approached the court with a suit seeking an order to declare the seats of the five governors vacant for defecting to the APC.
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 November 26, 2013, left the PDP for the APC.
The trial Judge, 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, told the court that it was brought pursuant to Section 177 (c), 221 and 222 (c) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
At the resumed hearing of the matter yesterday, Mr Damian Dodo (SAN), who held the brief for 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 Chief Akin Olujinmi for Gov. Ahmed, Lateef Fagbemi for Gov. Amaechi.