Defection: PDP Begins Fresh Moves To Remove Kwankwaso, Amaechi, Nyako, Ahmed, Wamakko As Governors

Five PDP govs who defected to APC

The ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP today launched a fresh offensive to remove from office five state governors who defected from the party to the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC as a federal high court in Abuja has already granted its request to serve fresh summons on the  five governors through substituted means by publishing it in two national dailies. This  followed an application filed on June 26, 2014 in pursuant to order 6 rule 5 (c) of the federal high court with one prayer based on seven grounds supported by 12 paragraphs affidavit deposed to by Friday Izinyon. While granting the PDP request, the judge said "I am satisfied that the plaintiff/ applicant has disclosed good reasons to warrant  the granting of the application. And it is hereby granted as prayed, the applicant shall within 7 days  published the suit in ThisDay Newspapers or Guardian Newspapers. They would be entitled to 30 days to respond. The case is adjourned to 22 Sept 2014 for mention." PDP had filed the first legal action in December last year following the defection of Governor AbdulFatah Ahmed of Kwara, Governor Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi of Rivers, Governor Muritala Nyako of Adamawa, Governor Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko of Sokoto  and Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso of Kano to APC. The suit filed  through its counsel Dr. Alex Izinyon (SAN), PDP had  prayed the court  to declare the seats of the five governors vacant in line with the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 ( as amended). However,the five governors through their counsel appeared in court under  protest that they heard about the case in the media. They therefore raised objection to the mode of service adopted by the plaintiff. Ruling on the objection which was argued last month, Justice Gabriel Kolawole said that from the document before the court the respondents were not served with the originating summons and other processes that were filed against them by the plaintiff. He said that failure by the PDP  to follow the procedures allowed by law in reaching the defendants since December 10 when the court action was instituted meant that there was no proper service. The court agreed with the lawyers to the governors that they have not been served with court papers and as such the court cannot assume jurisdiction until the plaintiff (PDP) has done the right thing by serving the governors with the court summon. According to the judge, the purported service of court process allegedly effected at No. 40 Blantyre street, being the new office of the APC was illegal, invalid, defective, essentially as it was not  endorse by the court before it was dropped at that premises. Justice Kolawole further ruled that the issue of service of originating summon by the plaintiff on the defendants was fundamental before any court can take further action against any defendant adding that in the instant case, the service done by PDP was not in conformity with the procedure of the court. The Judge adjourned the case indefinitely pending the time the plaintiff will comply with the law in the service of the originating summon on the five governors. Justice Kolawole asked PDP to formally write the court and attach the evidence of proper service of court processes on the defendants before any action could be taken against the governors. The PDP had claimed that it effected the service on the respondents  in line with the court order made on December 13, 2013. PDP said that it took the originating summon to No. 6 Bissau Street, Wuse II as directed by the court  but discovered that the APC had vacated the office and relocated to No. 40, Blantyre street, Abuja as the new office. PDP claimed that the originating summon and other court papers were subsequently taken to the new office for onward delivery by the APC to the governors. But Justice Kolawale agreed with the governors that the service at 40 Blantyre Street was invalid, ineffective and faulty because the order of the court for service did not embody the address. The Judge said that what the plaintiff (PDP) ought to have done was to come back to the court to legally vary the order of service before it can be effective on 40, Blantyre Street, being the new APC National Secretariat. Apparently in reaction to the newspaper publications on the legal action, counsel to the governors stormed the court under protest to challenge the purported service of court papers on the governors. They claimed in their different reactions that the appropriate places to serve them with court summons are their office in their respective state capitals. The governors insisted that no legal action has been instituted against them until they have been properly served with court summons and other processes. But PDP had argued that the governors were just evading service. Justice Kolawole said that PDP would have done well if the service of the originating summons had been effected on the Attorney General of the affected states since such service can hardly be faulted in law. He therefore ordered PDP represented by Dr. Alex Izion SAN to do the right thing  before the case can be resuscitated by the court for adjudication.


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