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Former Adamawa Deputy Governor, Ngilari’s Suit Suffers Setback

Bala Ngilari

Former Adamawa State Deputy Governor, Bala Ngilari’s suit in a Federal High Court, Abuja, seeking the state’s Acting Governor, Umaru Finitiri be sacked and he sworn in, as the Governor, suffered another set back today as parties to the suit failed to appear in court and complained of not being properly served.

While the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) representatives failed to show up, counsel to state House of Assembly’s Speaker, Ahmadu Umaru,  Mr. Leonard Nzardom and the acting Governor Fintiri, Duro Adeyele (SAN), complained they were unable to respond to the suit, attributing the failure to improper serving of suit notice to their clients. Both argued that the processes as published in the newspapers were improperly arranged and incomplete.

However, Ngilari’s counsel, Festus Keyamo told the court that all parties were duly served, adding that he  filed further affidavit notifying  the court that Fintiri, had written a letter to INEC calling on it not to conduct bye-election for a new and substantive Governor.

Justice Adeniyi Ademola on Friday, August 8 2014, in a suit: FHC/ABJ/CS/545/14,  upturned Ngilari’s prayer restraining INEC from conducting the governorship bye-election in the state, pending the determination of his suit. The jurist instated directed INEC to be notified on today’s hearing.

While Counsel to former Governor Nyako who was impeached by Finitiri – led Assembly on Tuesday July 15, Mr. Ayo Akam, informed  the court that he had been served and filed a response to the suit through a counter-affidavit, two defence lawyers sought an adjournment to enable them respond to the suit as they were just served copies of the court process.Their pleas were on the account of the constitutional provisions of Section 99 of the Sheriffs and Civil Process Act, which they said gave them minimum of 30 days to respond to court processes served through such medium.

Justice Ademola declined to uphold the pleas as he confirmed that all the parties have been duly served. He however adjourned next hearing till September 10, 2014 indicating, that with the constitutional provisions cited by the counsels, nothing could be done by the court until after 30 days, the respondents were served.

Ngilari, through his lawyer, Keyamo has  approached court, challenging the swaering – in of former Speaker of the State’s House of Assembly, Hon. Usman Finitiri, having resigned ahead of his former boss and Governor, Muritala Nyako who was impeached by about 20 state’s lawmakers on Tuesday, July 15, 2014.

He  is therefore praying the court that he instead be sworn in as the substantive state Governor since his resignation was invalid in the face of law, as  he wrongly addressed the letter, which was tendered shortly before Nyako’s impeachment to the Speaker of the State Assembly instead of the Governor who was yet to be impeached as at the time the letter was written and submitted.







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