Court to hear suit seeking Ganduje’s sack as APC Chairman June 26

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A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Thursday, fixed June to hear a suit seeking the removal of the National Chairman, All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Abdullahi Ganduje.

Justice Inyang Ekwo fixed the date after the plaintiff’s lawyer, Benjamin Davou, sought the leave of the court to allow time to reply to Ganduje’s preliminary objection.

The plaintiff; the North Central APC Forum, led by Saleh Zazzaga, is in the suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/599/2024 querying the propriety of Ganduje’s appointment as the Chairman of the APC when he is not from the North Central geo-political zone.

Listed as defendants in the case are Ganduje, the APC and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

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When the case was called on Thursday, Davou said although the suit was slated for hearing, it would not be possible because Ganduje’s lawyer, Raymond Asikeni, just served him the notice of preliminary objection and their counter affidavit.

Davou promised to file his reply to the two sets of documents filed by Ganduje first thing on Wednesday after the public holiday.

Justice Ekwo then adjourned till June 26 for hearing.

“On the date of hearing, the preliminary objection will be taken together with the substantive suit.

“The processes of any party that is absent from court shall be deemed as adopted,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the plaintiff, in the main suit, wants the court to, among others, restrain Ganduje from further parading himself as the chairman of the APC.

It also prays the court to issue an order directing INEC not to accord recognition to all actions taken by the APC, including congresses, primaries and nominations, since Ganduje became APC Chairman on August 3, 2023.

The plaintiff is contending among others, that Ganduje is occupying the office of the APC chairman illegally, not being from a state in the North Central geo-political zone.

The plaintiff’s argued that the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the APC breached the party’s constitution when it appointed Ganduje, from Kano State in the North West geo- political zone to replace Sen. Abdullahi Adamu from Nasarawa State in the North Central geo-political zone.

It also argued that Ganduje’s appointment to replace Abdullahi was contrary to Article 31.5(1) f of the APC constitution and ultra vires the powers of the NEC of the party.

The plaintiff added that by the true interpretation of Article 31.5(1) of the APC. Constitution 2013 (as amended), the party is bound to comply with the procedure for the replacement of an officer in the event of a vacancy and ought to appoint a member from Nasarawa State in the North Central geo- political zone into the office of the chairman of the party.

The plaintiff wants the court to among others, declare that by Article 20(1) of the APC constitution 2013 as amended, Ganduje cannot be appointed as the National Chairman of the party other than through democratic conducted elections and that his current occupation of the office is illegal.

It equally seeks a declaration that by the provisions of Article 13 of the APC constitution 2013 (as amended), the party’s National Convention is the final authority of the party which has the power to elect or remove national officers of the party including the national chairman of the party.

The plaintiff also wants a declaration that the party’s NEC lacked the power to appoint any person to the office of the Chairman, among others.(NAN)


By Taiye Agbaje

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