By Vivian Okejeme
Hearing on a suit challenging the qualification of Femi Gbajabiamila, the Speaker, House of Representatives, to contest for election has been fixed for February 25.
The motion brought pursuant to the rule of the court dated November 18 and filed November 19, 2019 in a four paragraph affidavit, is also challenging his nomination as Speaker in the 9th Assembly.
Clerk of the National Assembly, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Inspector-General of Police were also mentioned as defendants in the matter.
At the resumed hearing of the pending applications at the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Abuja, counsel to the plaintiff, Obed Agu, informed the court that he had motion on notice before it.
The counsel informed the court that the application was seeking to regularize his processes.
Specifically, he is asking for an extension of time to enable him file his reply to defense counter- affidavit and preliminary objection.
He further informed the court that he had filed his written address and wanted to adopt same as his oral argument and urged the court to grant his prayers.
When asked by Justice Charles Agbaza whether he had any objection, first defendant’s counsel, Femi Adedeji raised no objection.
In his ruling justice Agbaza said the applications had merit and according to him granted it in the interest of justice.
The judge also directed that hearing notice be served on the other defendants, who were absent in Monday’s proceeding.
The court had earlier refused to grant an order which came via an ex-parte motion with No.
M/6809/2019 which sought an interim injunction restraining Gbajabiamila from contesting for the office of Speaker in the 9th National Assembly.
Similarly, the court refused to also grant the order praying for an interim injunction restraining the National Assembly from recognizing the candidacy of Gbajabiamila for the speakership position.
The substantive suit with No. M/6810/2019 which was equally filed before the court by way of motion on notice, was filed by Ikenga Ugochinyere and the Action People’s Party (APP) as claimants on May 30, 2019.
Ugochinyere in the suit alleged that Gbajabiamila, who was convicted by the Supreme Court of State of Georgia, U.S., gave false information that he had no criminal record in the Form CF001 he submitted to INEC in 2011 and 2018.