As the nation and Edo people await the seven days deadline and the eventual closure of the Assembly, in addition to the taking over of her legislative functions by the National Assembly, the Speaker, and Clerk last Wednesday stopped the latest move by NASS.
Mr Frank Okiye, for the 3rd time, filed a suit stopping the National Assembly from taking over the State Assembly’s functions at the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.
In the originating summon and a motion on notice for interlocutory injunction, the plaintiffs asked Justice Nkeonye Maha to restrain the National Assembly from going ahead with its plans pending the hearing on the matter.
The suit: FHC/ABJ/CS/815/2019 was instituted against Mr. Mohammed Sani-Omolori, the Clerk of the National Assembly, first defendant and the National Assembly of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, second defendant.
The Nigerian Senate Tuesday joined their counterparts in the House of Representatives to order the Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki to issue fresh proclamation to pave way for.fresh inauguration. However, the All Progressives Congress governor has since closed his doors on the possibility of repeating the constirutional process.
The Senate recently passed a resolution that gave the governor one week to re-issue the proclamation letter, failing which they will takeover the state’s legislature. The case was instituted and brought before Justice Maha on July 23, but was adjourned until July 31 for hearing to allow service on respondents.
At the Wednesday hearing, the lead Counsel to the plaintiffs, Ola Olanipekun, SAN, told the court that after the defendants had been properly served as ordered by the court, “the Senate on Tuesday, July 30, still went ahead and passed a resolution for the takeover of the assembly if the governor fails to comply with its resolution.”
Even as the defendants, through their lawyers, had on Tuesday served the plaintiffs a counter affidavit to their motion and written address and also filed a memorandum of conditional appearance.
He expressed his displeasure that ‘it was disheartening, despite the fact that governor Obaseki had already issued a proclamation which was duly gazetted, the members of the state assembly had duly been inaugurated, principal members elected and the house has since been performing its functions, the federal lawmakers directed Obaseki to issue a fresh proclamation.’
The judge adjourned the case until August 7, 2019 to enable the plaintiffs respond to the counter affidavit and written address filed by lawyers to the National Assembly.
Justice Nkeonye Maha asked the parties maintain status quo and respect the sanctity of the court and be mindful the fact that matter they are before the court.5