In Ogun State Tukur and Others Were Warn Against Congress
A Federal High Court in Lagos has warned the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) Against taking any steps to organise a fresh Congress in Ogun State without first obeying the order made on April 27, voiding the last South west zonal Congress of the party.
Justice Okon Efreti Abang yesterday said: “For the avoidance of doubt, the order made on the 27th of April still subsists. It is in the interest of of the respondents to comply with the said order. The court will not hesitate to invoke its disciplinary powers Against any body who flouts the order of the court.
“This the court will do provided the process for initiating committal proceedings is adhered to,” the judge held.
The judge’s position was informed by complaints by lawyer to the applicants, Ajia Oluyede that the national leadership of the PDP, led by Bamaga Tukur was planning a fresh Congress for the party in Ogun State.
Applicants in the suit filed by members of the harmonised Executive of the PDP in Ogun State include Dayo Soremi, Engr Bayo Dayo and Hon Taiwo Abisekan. Named as defendants are PDP, former Acting National Chairman, Abubakar Kawu Baraje, Tajudeen Oladipo, Uche Secondus, Olusola Oke and Prof Rufia Alkali.
Despite denial from the defendants’ lead lawyer, Kunle Kalejaiye (SAN) that he was unaware of any plan fro a fresh congress, and contention that their applications, challenging the competence of the applicants’ suit be heard first, Justice Abang elected to first hear the applicants’ motion for committal proceedings.
The judge, relying on the decision of the Supreme Court in the case of Ebhodaghe vs Okoye 2004 18 NWLR part 905 at 495, held that a court must first consider an application that seeks the enforcement of its order before conducting any further business.
Justice Abang held that by so doing the court will be protecting its majesty and integrity and preventing its dignity from being brought into ridicule. The judge further held that it was the law the court must first protect its dignity by ensuring that its orders are complied with.
The judge elected to hear the applicants’ motion for committal proceedings along with another application filed by Kalejaiye, challenging the competence of the said motion by the applicants or seeking its transfer to another judge. He adjourned to May 31 for hearing of both applications, following which the court will consider all other pending applications.
The court, in its said April 27 ruling, voided the Congress the produced former Ekiti State governor, Segun Oni, as the party’s National Vice Chairman (South-West) on the ground that it was held in violation of a subsisting order of court.
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