By Iduozee Paul, Benin
The Edo State High Court sitting in Benin City, presided by Justice Emmanuel O. Akhamiogie adjourned the case for the determination of membership of Pastor OsagieIze-Iyamu if he is a member of the All Progressives Congress to June 17, 2020.
The claimants, Pastor Kenneth O. Asekhomhe, Mr. Benjamin Oghumu, Mr. Matthew Ogbebor and Mr. UnweniNosa in suit no HAB/05/1/20, has approached the court to know if the All Progressives Congress, APC, Comrade Adams Aliyu Oshiomhole and Pastor OsagieIze-Iyamu (defendants) have not breached the party’s constitution for giving Pastor OsagieIze-Iyamu waiver to contest in the forthcoming governorship elections in the state.
In their originating summons, stated whether article 31(2) of the All Progressives Congress constitution (as amended) is not in conflict with section 177 (c) of the Constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended as it relates to the qualification for election to the office of a governor of a state.
That whether having regards to the provisions of section 177 (c) of the Constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended, the 1st defendant can validly grant a waiver to the 3rd defendant to make him eligible to contest the 1st defendant’s primary election with a view to nominating and/or sponsoring him as its candidate to contest the 2020 governorship election of Edo State of Nigeria.
It says whether having regard to the provisions of articles 31 (2) and 31(3) (ii) of the Constitution of the APC 2014 (as amended), the 2nd defendant can validly grant a waiver to the 3rd defendant without the approval of the National Executive Committee of the 1st defendant and without the 3rd defendant formally applying for such waiver through his claimed ward, local government area, state and zonal committee of the 1st defendant.
It asserted that, whether a waiver purportedly granted by the 2nd defendant to the 3rd defendant on or about 21/5/2020 or any other data, in gross violation of the provisions of section 177(c) of the 1999 constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria (as amended) and article 31 (2) and 31(3) (ii) of the extant 2014 amended constitution of the 1st defendant, is not null, void and of no effect.
Also, journalists were barred from covering the court proceedings but one of the legal team to the defendants, Barr. Famous Osawaru said the judge having listened to both counsels, adjoined the case to June 17, 2020.
“So, what they are actually asking the court to interpret whether he is qualified to contest the governorship election.
“So, they have an ex-parte injunction. They also filed interlocutory as well as originating process by way of originating summons but after several arguments because counsel have already entered defense for the defendant, the court now said there is no way they can take interlocutory injunction or interim injunction restraining anybody anymore.
” The best thing the court will do is to go into the main matters; to look at the merits of the case.
” So for now, the matter is adjourned to June 17, at that time we must have filed all processes, nothing like order for injunction or restraining anybody, let us look at the substance of the matter. So, we are giving 10 days to file our response while the claimants were given two days to reply.
“So, on the 17th is for us to come to court to come and argue the substantive matter before the court. And the court will adjourn for rulings”, Osawaru stated.