Supreme Court To Rule On Dasuki’s Detention March

The Supreme Court on Monday fixed March 2 for judgment on an appeal by former National Security Adviser, NSA, Sambo Dasuki, challenging his alleged indefinite detention.

The panel of five Justices, led by Dattijo Mohammed, gave the date after counsel to the parties in the case adopted their addresses.

The ex-NSA had on June 15, 2016 at the Court of Appeal in Abuja, lost his bid to enforce his freedom after securing bails on all the charges against him.

The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that Mr. Dasuki is standing trial for allegedly mismanaging $2.1 billion meant for purchase of arms to fight the Boko Haram insurgents.

Mr. Dasuki’s counsel, Joe Daudu, argued that the decision of the Court of Appeal was erroneous, adding that it was incumbent on the Supreme Court to restore the integrity of all courts.

Mr. Daudu submitted that it was out of place for the court of appeal to scuttle the fundamental rights of a citizen after well-considered decisions of four courts that admitted the applicant to bail.

He said that his client needed the bail to prepare his defence, adding that he could not have access to security documents while in detention.

“My Lords, Dasuki is already being treated as a convict, even when none of the charges brought against him has been concluded.

“We sincerely pray this esteemed court to do the needful by setting aside the decision of the lower court.

“We also pray the court to momentarily halt the applicant’s trial until the federal government obeys the bail order of court,’’ Daudu said.
Rotimi Jacobs, counsel to EFCC, opposed the appeal, saying that it lacked merit and should be dismissed.

He said the bail condition granted Mr. Dasuki was perfected on December 29, 2015, adding that a warrant of release to that effect was served on the Comptroller of Prisons in Kuje, upon which he was released.

Mr. Jacobs said the federal government had not violated his rights, adding that the applicant was only re-arrested by the operatives of the SSS over other fraud allegations.

He said that it was unfair for the applicant to consider his re-arrest as a disobedience to court’s order on his bail.
He said that no court bail was targeted at the SSS when granted.
“The EFCC which put Dasuki on trial on criminal charges at the FCT High Court cannot be held responsible for the action of the DSS on the ground that the two agencies are different entities.

“Besides, My Lords, the appeal court has said there was no existing order against the re-arrest of Dasuki.
“Suffice to say that there cannot be a disobedience to a non-existing court order.

“We pray the apex court to affirm the decision of the lower court which ordered the continuation of the applicant’s trial even while he remains in detention,’’ he said.

Mr. Dasuki had approached Supreme Court praying it to set aside the decision of the Court of Appeal which exonerated EFCC from his re-arrest shortly after he perfected his bail conditions.

He further asked the court to void the ruling of the Federal High Court.

The trial court had held that DSS and EFCC were distinct agents of the federal government, which is the complainant in the charges against the applicant.

Mr. Dasuki had alleged that such pronouncement had given the two agents of government handling the trial to act at variance and against justice.

(NAN)

Okezie Ikpeazu Wins At Supreme Court, Remains Governor Of Abia State

The supreme court has upheld the position of Okezie Ikpeazu as Abia state governor.

On June 27, Okon Abang, a judge of the federal high court, Abuja, ordered Ikpeazu’s removal on the allegation that he submitted false tax documents to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

This followed a suit filed by Uche Ogah who placed second in the PDP governorship primary election Ikpeazu won.

Abang had directed INEC to issue Ogah with a certificate of return, but Ikpeazu filed an appeal against the judgment.

On August 8, the appeal court set aside the judgment of the lower court, and held that the judge ignored examining the tax documents which were tendered to his court as exhibits.

At the apex court on Friday, a five-man panel of judges led by Walter Onnoghen, chief of justice of Nigeria (CJN), faulted the lower court’s decision on the tax documents.

Onnoghen said Ikpeazu could not be held responsible for the discrepancies in his tax documents because there were given to him by the state.

The court then dismissed Ogah’ suit challenging the judgment of the appeal court which reversed the order of the high court sacking Ikpeazu

 

Justice Ngwuta Arraigned At CCT

A suspended Supreme Court judge, Justice Sylvester Ngwuta was on Thursday arraigned at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) Abuja, on an amended 8-count charge of false assets declaration.

Ngwuta, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges instituted by the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation.

Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), counsel to the defendant, made an oral application seeking the bail of his client on self-recognisance.

Mr Umar Muhammed, Director of Public Prosecutions of the Federation, did not oppose the application, as according to him, bail granting was at the discretion of the court.

The tribunal headed by its Chairman, Danladi Umar, granted the bail application and fixed July 12 for the commencement of trial.

The Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr Abubakar Malami (SAN), had averred that Ngwuta contravened Section 15 of Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria.

According to Malami, false declaration of assets was punishable under Section 23 (2) of the Act.

Ngwuta is one of the federal judges from whose residences, the Department of State Service (DSS) claimed it uncovered huge sums of money in various denominations.

The DSS raided the judges’ residences in October, 2016.

Ngwuta is currently standing trial on that account before Justice John Tsoho of the Federal High Court, Abuja, on an amended 16-count charge bordering on money laundering.

The Federal Government that preferred that charges, said Ngwuta contravened Section 15 (2) (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2012 (as amended).

It added that the offences are punishable under Section 15 (3) of the Act.

7years-jail term attested to kidnapper- Supreme court

The Nigeria Supreme court on Nigeria has decleared the conviction of Human traffickers Serah Ekundayo Ezekiel, who was earlier sentenced to 7 years imprisonment for trafficking in persons

The judgment by the apex court brings to an end the legal battle which started in 2011 in Ikeja, Lagos.

In a unanimous decision on Friday, the five Justices of the Supreme Court who sat on the matter upheld the judgment of the Court of Appeal, Lagos Division.

In his lead Judgment, Justice C.C Nwaeze found no merit in the appeal and therefore, dismissed it.

Serah Ezekiel was sued at the Federal High Court, Ikeja, Lagos on November 18, 2011 by the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) on behalf of the Attorney-General of the Federation on an 18 Counts charge, all bothering on offences of trafficking in persons contrary to various sections of the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Law Enforcement and Administration Act, 2003 (as amended)

Ezekiel, who was 29 year old as at the time of committing the offence in July 2011 procured four females, aged 17, 19, 20 and 21 years from various parts of Lagos State and took them to Mali where they were used as prostitutes.

On arraignment, she pleaded guilty to all the counts and was subsequently found guilty, convicted on all the 18 counts and sentenced.

Aggrieved by her conviction and sentence, Serah Ezekiel approached the Court of Appeal, Lagos Division which affirmed the trial Court’s verdict. Still not satisfied, she approached the Apex Court but had her case dismissed for lack of merit.

Reacting to the Supreme Court judgment, Acting Director-General of NAPTIP, Mr. Abdulrazak Dangiri expressed satisfaction with the outcome of the appeal.

The Supreme Court judgment brings to two appeals decided by the Apex Court in the last 2 weeks on human trafficking.

The Court a fortnight ago in a judgment read by Justice Mary Odili dismissed a similar appeal brought against the Agency by a convicted trafficker, Martina Opara who was sentenced to 14 years imprisonment.

 

Land Control: Supreme Court Throws Out FG Suit Against Lagos

The Supreme Court has struck out a suit filed by the Federal Government seeking an order to seize control and management of its land in Lagos State from the state government.

After upholding the preliminary objection filed by the Lagos Government to challenge the competence of the suit, a five-man panel of the Supreme Court led by Justice Olabode Rhodes-Vivour, unanimously struck out the Federal Government’s suit.

The dispute between the federal and Lagos State governments was about “general control and management of federal land within Lagos State particularly the re-issuance of certificates of occupancy, granting consent or exercising rights of ownership.”

Justice Dattijo Muhammad, who read the apex court’s lead ruling, agreed with the Lagos State Government that the court lacked the power to exercise its “original jurisdiction” in the suit because the Federal Government had “transferred its title in the land to others”.

Supreme Court Orders High Court To Retry Sen Dahiru’s Case

The Supreme Court Friday declined to remove Sokoto State Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal from office.

Instead, the appellate court ruled that a case filed by Senator Umaru Dahiru challenging the nomination of Tambuwal as candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the April 2015 governorship election be retried at the Federal High Court.

Dahiru contested for the governorship election in the December 2014 primaries of the APC, but lost to Tambuwal, who eventually went on to win the gubernatorial poll conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in April 2015 and was subsequently sworn-in as Governor on May 29 of the same year.

Friday’s ruling followed an earlier judgement given by the Supreme Court in June this year which dismissed application by the Sokoto State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and it’s governorship candidate, Senator Abdallah Wali, to be joined as parties to Dahiru’s suit.

In a judgement written by Hon Justice Musa Dattijo Muhammed JSC and read by Hon Justice CC Nweze JSC, the court held that rather than consider the case as mere academic exercise, the High Court should retry the case on its merit.

Counsel to Tambuwal, Paul M. Kassim Esq, who led six other lawyers, said the defence are are satisfied with the ruling and will get set for trial at the Federal High Court.

“Our position remains unchanged, that our client was validly nominated by the APC and was duly elected Governor by the good people of Sokoto State,” he told reporters after the judgement.

In the June ruling by now retired Justice Sulaiman Galadima JSC, the Supreme Court held that PDP and Wali lacked the locus standi to apply to be joined in the suit, describing the two as interlopers who should not take part in a matter purely involving another party.

Even though Sokoto PDP had announced that they will not challenge the election of Tambuwal in 2015, they however, through case number SC/67/2016, sought to be joined as parties in Dahiru’s suit on the grounds that if it succeeds, Wali should be declared winner of the election.

In a notice of motion for joinder filed at the apex court by EK Ashiekaa SAN, Wali and PDP contended that having participated in the 2015 governorship election, and having scored the next highest number of votes cast after that of Tambuwal, they have sufficient grounds to be joined in the case.

They said the reliefs sought by Dahiru would have an effect on the outcome of the Sokoto governorship election by creating a vacuum.

“That the vacuum likely to be created by the success of the Appellants appeal can only be filled by the applicant who scored the next highest returned votes,” they argued.

Justice Galadima however struck out the application, foreclosing any move by the PDP to get APC removed from power in Sokoto through the back door.

No date yet has been set for hearing on the interlocutory appeal filed by Senator Umar Dahiru challenging the ruling of the Appeal Court which held that his case at the Federal High Court against Tambuwal’s emergence as APC candidate for the April 2015 governorship election could not proceed since it has been overtaken by events and will be a mere academic exercise if it proceeds.

Sagay Slams Arrested Judges For Comments On Amaechi

The Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee against Corruption. Itse Sagay, has lambasted two Supreme Court justices for levelling allegations of bribery against the Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi.
Justices John Okoro and Sylvester Ngwuta, in separate letters to the immediate past Chief Justice of Nigeria, Mahmoud Mohammed, alleged that Mr. Amaechi sought to influence their judgements in election petitions before them in favour of the All Progressives Congress.
The judges were among the seven judges arrested last month for alleged corruption by the State Security Service, SSS. They were later released and have been suspended by the National Judicial Council.
While Mr. Okoro alleged Mr. Amaechi sought to pervert justice in the governorship election disputes in Ekiti, Rivers and Ebonyi states, Mr. Ngwuta accused the minister of seeking to bribe him to get favourable judgement in Abia, Akwa Ibom and Rivers election petitions.
Mr. Amaechi has since denied the allegations.
Mr. Sagay said in a statement, Thursday, that the outburst by the two justices was surprising, considering that it was totally unrelated to the raids of their premises, their arrest and subsequent charges.
He said men of that status should not indulge in such diversionary activities in the midst of grave and ominous charges facing them.
“I would have thought that they would use the time at their disposal to prepare their defences against the serious charges they are facing,” Mr. Sagay said in the statement which he issued in his personal capacity.

“In any case, given their statuses as Supreme Court Justices, even in the middle of the adversity confronting them, they should not have engaged in a distraction totally incompatible with the dignity and respect that their high offices attract.
“It is demeaning for them to abandon their legitimate defence in order to smear a high official of the Buhari government, which latter, they probably consider to be the source of their predicaments.”
Mr. Sagay, a professor of law and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, argued that mere allegations could not have enough weight to affect the position of such a high official as Mr. Amaechi, “otherwise knowing the disposition of Nigerians for putting people down, no office holder will be safe in this country.”
He said, “It is therefore improper and ridiculous to compare the position of the Justices in whose houses millions of naira and hundreds of thousands of dollars were recovered, to that of Amaechi against whom there is only the mere ipse dixit of the Judges.”
Mr. Sagay said the anti-Amaechi narrative was consistent with the objectives and interests of the chief promoters and funders of judicial corruption during election petitions.
According to him, the powerful opposition politicians were well known.
He said, “To be more specific, they are from Rivers and Akwa-Ibom States. They are the ones who financed judicial corruptions and brought that great institution, the judiciary, to its knees, after the 2015 elections.”
Mr. Sagay said the allegations were intended to undermine and weaken the Buhari-led federal government, by depriving it of the service, input, ideas and productivity of some of its brightest stars.
“This is intended to set the stage for charging the government with ineffectiveness and cluelessness.
“In other words, it is an attempt to reduce the image and perception of this Federal Government to the low level of their own late and unlamented government.
“Therefore, the call for Amaechi to step down is malicious and vindictive. It should be ignored with complete ignominy.”

Supreme Court Upholds Election Of Governor Dickson

The Supreme Court on Tuesday affirmed Seriake Dickson as governor of Bayelsa State.

The seven-member panel of judges threw out an appeal by Timipre Sylva, candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, challenging the election of Dickson.

The election tribunal and the Court of Appeal had earlier upheld Dickson’s election.

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, had accused some bigwigs of the All Progressives Congress, APC, of pressurizing Justices of the Supreme Court in a bid to favour the party in the Bayelsa State Governorship election matter.

However, in a unanimous decision, a seven-man panel of Justices of the apex court led by Justice Mohammed Tanko, dismissed the appeal by the All Progressives Congress, APC, and its governorship candidate in the state, Timipre Sylva.

Justice Tanko who read the lead verdict held that the petition lacked merit.

“This appeal lacks merit and it should be dismissed. I hereby dismiss the appeal and affirm the judgment of the court below. I shall give my reasons on Friday, November 18. Parties are to bear their cost”, Justice Tanko held.

Nevertheless, the court, in two other judgments by Justices Kudirat Ekekere-Ekun and Olukayode Ariwola, dismissed cross-appeal filed by Dickson and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, against Sylva and the APC, though they also reserved their reasons till Friday.

EFCC Traces Slush Funds To More Supreme Court Justices

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has traced suspicious funds to more Supreme Court Justices.

Two Justices of the Supreme Court – Justice Inyang Okoro and Justice Sylvester Ngwuta – are among the 15 judges under probe by the EFCC and the Department of State Services (DSS) for alleged corruption.

It was also learnt yesterday that the National Judicial Council (NJC) will write to judges under probe to stop perform their official responsibilities until their innocence is established.

The NJC, which took the decision last week, was said to have decided to formally notify the judges to avoid a haphazard compliance with the directive.

A source said the letters will be sent to them before the end of this week.

It was also learnt that the EFCC is preparing charges against the six judges it had interrogated.

One of the judges, whose case file was being “fine-tuned”, might face a 12-count charges.

Also, all the 15 judges under investigation by the EFCC and the DSS have had their movement restricted to the country pending the conclusion of the probe.

The EFCC team is believed to have discovered that suspicious funds were lodged in the accounts of more Supreme Court Justices.

The Federal High Court and the National Industrial Court (NIC) judges under investigation are: Justices Mohammed Nasir Yunusa; Hyeladzira Ajiya Nganjiwa; Musa Haruna Kurya; Agbadu James Fishim; Uwani Abba Aji; and Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, Presiding Justice of the Court of Appeal, Ilorin Division, Justice Mohammed Ladan Tsamiya, Justice Adeniyi Ademola( Federal High Court); the former Chief Judge of Enugu State, Justice I. A. Umezulike; Justice Kabiru Auta of Kano State High Court; Justice Muazu Pindiga (Gombe State High Court); Justice Bashir Sukola and Justice Ladan Manir, from the Kaduna State High Court..

An EFCC source said: “From our findings so far, there is much rot in the Judiciary.

“More Supreme Court Justices have questions to answer on suspicious funds in their accounts. We cannot give you their names but it is certain that the apex court needs a surgical cleansing.

“We are already preferring charges against some of the six judges of the Federal High Court and the National Industrial Court interrogated by our team. In fact, one of them will face a 12-count charge.

“ We do not want piecemeal arraignment of the judges in court. We plan to file charges against all of them at once.”

On the restriction of the 15 judges, the source said: “It is only in exceptional circumstances like ill-health and any emergency that these judges will be allowed to step out of the country. They have all been watch-listed pending the conclusion of investigation or their trial.”

The NJC is said to be unhappy with the Executive’s delay in acting on its recommendation of the retirement or dismissal of erring judicial officers.

The practice is that the council writes to the President (in the case of a judge of a federal court) and to the governor (in the case of a judge of a state court) about its recommendation. Either the President or the governor is required to write back to the NJC about its acceptance and execution of the council’s recommendation.

It was learnt that in most cases the Executive has always been reluctant in implementing the recommendations of the NJC and writing back.

The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Mahmud Muhammed, expressed a similar reservation in an October 26, 2016 letter to a group, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP).

In the letter written by his Senior Special Assistant, H. S. Sa’eed, the CJN said: “The failure on the part of the executive arm of government to act upon recommendations by the NJC cannot be blamed upon the NJC.”

He said the Constitution empowers the NJC only to recommend to the President and the governors the removal from office of judicial officers and to exercise disciplinary control over such judicial officers, which in effect is the extent of its power to discipline.

The CJN added that it was not within the powers of the NJC to implement its recommendation of retirement or dismissal, but that the most it could do is to suspend an erring judicial officer until its recommendations are accepted by the Executive.

The Nation’s investigation revealed that the President and some governors are yet to act on some specific recommendations involving judicial officers, such as Justice Musa Ibrahim Anka (Zamfara High Court), Justice Mohammed Yunusa (Federal High Court), Justice Olamide Oloyede (Osun State High Court) and Justice I. E. Umezulike (Chief Judge of Enugu State) and Kabiru Auta (Kano State High Court).

In 2011, the NJC directed that Justice Anka be sacked, having been found guilty of gross misconduct (bribery and corruption). It found that the judge received bribe from Zubairu Abdulmalik to deliver judgment in his favour.

Justice Anka, before then had been on suspension by the NJC since July 2010, following a petition written against him by Zamfara State DSS, alleging that he received bribe from one Zubairu Abdulmalik in order to deliver judgment in his favour.

The NJC, in July, recommended to President Muhammadu Buhari that Justice Yunusa be compulsorily retired for granting interim orders and perpet­ual injunctions, restrain­ing Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), In­spector General of Police (IGP), Independent Corrupt Practices and related of­fences Commission (ICPC) and EFCC from arresting, in­vestigating and prosecuting some persons accused of corruption in some cases.

Also in July, the NJC recommended to the Osun State Governor, the compulsory retirement from office of Justice Olamide Oloyede for failing “to conduct herself in such a manner as to preserve the dignity of her office and impartiality and independence of the judiciary.

The NJC, in a statement on July 18, 2016, said Justice Oloyedee “derailed when she wrote a petition against the Osun State Governor and his Deputy to members of the State House of Assembly and circulated same to 36 persons and organisations”.

The petition was said to have contained political statements, unsubstantiated allegations and accusations aimed at deriding, demeaning and undermining the Government of Osun State.

On the case of Justice Auta, the NJC, in a statement on September 30, 2016, recommended to the Kano State Governor, Alhaji Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, that the judge be dismissed and be handed over to the police for prosecution following its findings on the allegations levelled against him by Alhaji Kabiru Yakassai.

Yakassai had petitioned the NJC, claiming that he paid N125, 000.000.00 into an account approved by the Judge.

The NJC also recommended that Justice Auta be handed over to the Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Zone 1, Kano, for prosecution

Also in September, the NJC recommended Justice Umezulike to the Governor of Enugu State, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, for compulsory retirement.

The council confirmed the allegations levelled against him by Barrister Peter Eze.

It was alleged that Justice Umezulike failed to deliver judgement in suit No E/13/2008: Ajogwu V Nigerian Bottling Company Limited in which final addresses were adopted on 23rd October, 2014.

The judgement was however delivered on 9th March, 2015, about 126 days after addresses had been adopted, contrary to constitutional provisions that judgement should be delivered within 90 days.

It was learnt that neither the President nor the governors have written the NJC in relation to its recommendations on the judges.

Saraki’s Trial Will End At Supreme Court – Dino Melaye

Flamboyant Senator, Otunba Dino Melaye, on Saturday in Abuja opened a new chapter in the trial of the President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, at the Code of Conduct Tribunal over alleged false declarations of his assets.

Melaye said it was certain the issue would end at the Supreme Court.

According to him, the committees in the National Assembly would keep close watch on the Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the Federal Government and ensure proper implementation of the 2016 budget, which has been signed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Melaye is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on the Federal Capital Territory and represents Kogi West Senatorial District on the platform of the All Progressives Congress.

He was also the founder of a group: “Like-minded Senators,” which worked for the emergence of Saraki as Senate president.

Speaking on Saturday after the conferment of an award on him by the Rotary Club of Ilorin GRA, Kwara State, led by a former Military Administrator of Bauchi and Osun States, retired Colonel Theophilus Bamigboye, for his commitment to nation building, Melaye said: “Our support for the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, is total and undiluted.

“Our commitment to his getting justice is a battle of no retreat, no surrender.

“One thing I want to assure Nigerians is that the trial of Saraki will not end in the CCT, but in the Supreme Court and we are with the Senate president until we get to the last bus stop.

“We are with him up till Supreme Court.”

Melaye expressed excitement that after the controversies surrounding the 2016 budget, it has been signed by the President.

He said: “What is more important is not the signing of the budget but its implementation.

“But we look forward to making sure that the National Assembly with all sincerity of purpose carries out monitoring of the MDAs to make sure that this budget is properly implemented.

“May we never see a situation where only 30 per cent of capital projects is implemented.

Kogi Drags NASS, AGF Before Supreme Court Over Assembly Takeover

The Kogi State Government has sued the National Assembly and the Attorney-General of the Federation before the Supreme Court, asking for an order nullifying the House of Representatives’ resolution to take over the legislative functions of the state’s House of Assembly.

The House of Representatives had on March 9, 2016 passed a resolution to take over the legislative functions of the Kogi State House of Assembly.

The House of Representatives passed the resolution following the crisis that broke out from the tussle for the speakership position between two factions of the state assembly.

It also in the said resolution directed the Inspector-General of Police to seal up the House of Assembly until the crisis was resolved.

But the Kogi State Government represented by the state’s Attorney-General and the House of Assembly, filed its suit on April 29, 2016 before the Supreme Court, to challenge the House of Representatives’ resolution.

The National Assembly and the AGF are the two defendants to the suit.

The plaintiffs in the suit with number, SC.340/2016, filed under Order 3 Rule 5 of the Supreme Court Rules, asked the apex court to declare that the House of Representatives’ resolution was passed in breach of section 11(4) of the Constitution.

They also urged the apex court to nullify the resolution.

‎They contended in their statement of claim that “the factional disagreement” between members of House of Assembly was normal in a democracy.

According to them, the crisis started on February 16, 2016, following a disagreement between two factions in the House of Assembly over the speakership position.

They claimed that following the disagreement, a faction of the members of the House of Assembly‎ filed the suit, FHC/LKJ/CS/16/16 (Kogi State House of Assembly & 3 Ors V National Assembly & 2 Ors.

They said while the suit was pending, the House of Representatives invoked its power ‎under section 11(4) of the Constitution to take over the functions of the House of Assembly.

The plaintiffs said the House of Representatives declared the impeachment ‎proceedings embarked upon by five members of the members of the House of Assembly for the removal of the Speaker, as clearly violating section 92(c) of the Constitution.

They added that the lower legislative chamber of the National Assembly also condemned the roles played by the police in providing cover for only five members out of the 20 members of the House of Assembly “to commit illegalities”.

But the plaintiffs claimed that the said “disagreement” between the factions in the House of Assembly did not create any “adverse security situation” in the state.

Their statement of claim accompanying the suit added, “There is no security report by the Governor of Kwara State, the police or any security agency in Nigeria that the disagreement among members of Kogi State House of Assembly caused insecurity and danger t o public safety in the state.

“At all times material to the passage of the resolution of the National Assembly to take over Kogi State House of Assembly, Kogi State was ad is calm and peaceful as citizens go about their lawful business.”

The plaintiffs therefore sought the following two prayers: “A declaration that the resolution of the House of Representatives on Wednesday, March 9, 2016, which purportedly took over the legislative functions of Kogi State House of Assembly is passed in breach of section 11(4) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).

“An order of perpetual injunction restraining the National Assembly from interfering with or take over the legislative functions of Kogi State House of Assembly based on the resolution of the House of Representatives passed on Wednesday, March 9, 2016.”

The processes of the suit had been served on the defendants.

But the defendants have yet to respond to the suit and no date has been fixed for the hearing.