A Federal High Court in Abuja has fixed September 11 for judgment in the suit by Senator Dino Melaye, challenging his planned recall by voters of Kogi West Senatorial District.
The court’s sitting vacation judge, Justice Nnamdi Dimgba announced the date today after listening to lawyers argued their client’s positions and adopted written arguments filed.
In the suit, marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/567/2017, Melaye alleged among others, denial of fair hearing and queried the authenticity of some of the signatures of voters in the petition for his recall sent to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The court has just commenced hearing in a similar suit marked: FHC/ABJ/601/2017, filed by the Kogi State Chapter of the All Progressive Congress (APC) and 12 others.
The other plaintiffs in the second suit are Alhaji Haddy Ametuo, Hon. Shaibu Osune, S.T Adejo, Comrade Yahaya Ade Ismail, Chief Gbenga Ashagun, Ahovi S. Ibrahim, Ghali ND Usman, Isa Abubakar, I. Molemodile, Abubakr M. Adamu and Daniel Sekpe.
Recall that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in June notified Senator Dino Melaye that it has received a petition for his recall.
National Daily reported the submission of the petition to INEC with over 188,000 eligible voters in Mr. Melaye’s Kogi West constituency signing for the recall.
However, in other to save his job, the embattled senator dragged the Independent National Electoral Commission before the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, seeking an order stopping the process by his constituents to recall him.
In an Originating Summons he filed through his lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, the embattled lawmaker prayed the court to declare that the petition presented to INEC for his recall was illegal, unlawful, wrongful, unconstitutional, invalid, null and void and of no effect in law.
He also prayed the court for a declaration that the petition purportedly forwarded to the INEC was invalid and of no effect, the same being signed by fictitious, dead and none existing persons in his senatorial district, as well as for an order of injunction restraining INEC from commencing or further continuing or completing the process of his recall.
In the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/567/2017, which he filed pursuant to sections 36,68 and 69 of the 1999 Constitution and Order 3, Rule 6 of the FHC Civil Procedure Rules 2009, Melaye, begged the high court to stop the electoral body from conducting any referendum predicated on the fictitious petition allegedly submitted to it by his purported constituents on the basis of the fundamentally and legally flawed petition.
He specifically urged the court to determine whether by provisions of Sections 68 and 69 of the Constitution, he is entitled to a fair hearing before the process of his recall as envisaged by the provisions of Section 69 of the Constitution can be triggered.