Nigeria: Edo Crisis - Court Refuses to Stop Oshiomhole As APC National Chair

24 January 2020

Abuja — THE High Court in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja has refused to grant the Exparte Application filed by the National Vice Chairman, North East, of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mustapha Salihu; former Edo State chairman of the APC, Anselm Ojezua and others, seeking to have the National Chairman of the party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole vacate his office.

Recall that the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led faction of the APC in Edo State had called for the removal of Oshiomhole, whom they claimed had been suspended by the party in the state. However, the move to oust the National Party Chairman was frustrated when the Court refused to grant the Exparte motion filed by Salihu, Ojezua and others but ordered that the defendants (Oshiomhiole, APC and others) be put on notice before the motion was heard to ensure fair hearing in the matter.

In the claimants' Motion Ex Parte filed by their Counsel, Oluwole Afolabi, Mustapha Salihu, Ojezua and Others, asked the court to stop the defendant (Oshiomhole) from parading himself as National Chairman of the APC just as they urged the Inspector General of Police and the Director General of the Department of State Services, DSS, from allowing the defendant access to the office of the Chairman pending the determination of the Motion on Notice in the suit.

However, when the matter came up for hearing, Counsel to Oshiomhole and APC, D. D. Dodo (SAN), noted that they had not been served and drew the court's attention to the Memorandum of Appearance and Undertaking to Accept Service of processes on behalf of the 1st & 2nd defendants.

The claimants indicated that they would abandon prayers 1 and 2 of their Motion Ex parte which seeks leave to serve the 1st defendant by substituted means.

The Claimants then sought to proceed to move the Motion Ex parte, but the Presiding Judge, Justice Senchi halted the move and ordered that the defendants be put on notice to ensure fair hearing in the matter.

The order followed a heated argument by Counsel to the defendants, Dodo SAN, who expressed shock over the alleged attempt by the claimants to coerce the court to grant their prayers without servicing the processes to the 1st and 2nd defendants.

Justice Senchi ruled that he would hear all parties instead of granting the exparte application to have Oshiomhole vacate his office as National Chairman of the APC as requested by the Plaintiffs.

The matter was consequently adjourned to February 18, 2020 for hearing of the claimants' application.

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