Oyegun, INEC, Others to Appear in Court over Kaduna APC Crisis


Tobi Soniyi

Justice Nnamdi Dimgba of a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has asked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Inspector General of Police and the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie Oyegun, to appear before him over the leadership crisis rocking the party in the state.

Others expected to appear before the court include Senator Lawal Shuaibu, Inuwa Abdukadir, Senator Lawal Shuaibu and the Kaduna State Independent Electoral Commission.

The court also granted an order of substituted service allowing some contestants in the forthcoming Local Government Council elections in Kaduna State to serve court processes by way of substituted means on the defendants in Kaduna State which is outside the court’s jurisdiction.

The plaintiffs in the matter, Hon. Aliyu Ismail, Hon. Abdullahi Yusuf Babanyau and Architect Ado Mohammed dragged the IGP, INEC, Oyegun and others before the court over the legality of Shuaibu Idris Lauje as the Chairman of the party in the state.
In the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/493/17, the plaintiffs asked the court to restrain Lauje from parading himself as the chairman of the party in the state.

They also asked the court to restrain the IGP from harassing, intimidating or arresting Alhaji Danlami Wada, who is the acting Chairman of the party in the state and 10th defendant in the matter from performing the functions of his office.
The plaintiffs in a motion ex-parte, through their counsel, Babs Akinwumi had urged the court to grant leave to the plaintiffs to serve the defendants outside the court’s jurisdiction by serving the originating processes and every other process in the suit on Lauje and Wada at the APC State Secretariat in Kaduna State.

The plaintiffs also prayed the court for leave to serve the court processes on some of the defendants in Kaduna State.
In his ruling, the judge granted the prayers of the plaintiffs and adjourned the matter to the 30th of June 2017 for hearing.
The APC in Kaduna State has been rocked by leadership crisis. Following the election of Hon Barnabas Bantex as the Deputy Governor of Kaduna State, the Deputy Chairman, Alhaji S.I. Danlami Wada stepped in as the acting Chairman by virtue of the provisions of Articles 14.2 and 15B of the Constitution of the APC.

Trouble however started when Lauje who is believed to have the support of the Kaduna State Governor, Ahmed El-Rufai, started parading himself as the state chairman of the party while the Deputy Chairman was allegedly locked out on the order of the state governor.

This scenario has left the contestants in the forthcoming local government election in the state confused and they have decided to approach the court for clarification on the leadership of the party in Kaduna State.
There is also a supremacy battle between El-Rufai and some party leaders, led by the Senator representing Kaduna Central, Comrade Shehu Sani.