Court Restrains Ondo Assembly from Suspending Lawmaker

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By James Sowole

The Ondo State High Court has restrained the state House of Assembly and the Speaker from suspending the lawmaker representing Ese-Odo state constituency, Hon Success Torhukerhijo.

Justice S.A Bola ordered the restriction while ruling on an ex-parte motion filed by the counsel to the lawmaker, Mr. Dipo Torhukerhijo.

In the order served on the Speaker and the Assembly, the court restrained them, their officers, agents and servants from suspending the lawmaker just as they were served with the originating summons.

The order reads: “The defendants/respondents, their officers, servants and agents are hereby restrained from suspending the claimant, applicant or by any means howsoever called, prevent the applicant from performing his constitutional duties or any legislative function as a member of the Ondo State House of Assembly pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice in this suit.

“Order is further made restraining the defendants/respondents, their officers, agents and servants from stopping the benefits or other entitlements of the claimant as an elected member of the House of Assembly pending the determination of the motion on notice.”

The All Progressives Congress (APC) at the local government area level had purportedly expelled the lawmaker from Ese-odo, Torhukerhijo, as a precursor to suspending him from the Assembly.

It was alleged that the lawmaker reacted to the purported expulsion by insulting the leadership of the party and the House of Assembly in a media chat.

But the lawmaker had in a statement dissociated himself from any reaction to his purported expulsion, stating that “the said publication which was done in his name in a phony online publication is malicious, fraudulent and the handwork of perpetual evil doers.”

Sequel to the purported reaction, the Assembly last Thursday set up a committee to investigate Torhukerhijo over his purported foul language in a media chat and report back to the Assembly.