By Alex Enumah
The All Progressives Congress (APC) has told a Federal High Court in Abuja, that the Comrade Adams Oshiomhole-led National Working Committee (NWC) was sacked to pave way for an end to the internal leadership crisis that rocked its rank and file.
The APC also told the court that immediately the Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee was put in place after the NWC’s dissolution, the crisis that had characterised its affairs were laid to rest.
The party’s claim is part of its response to the legal action challenging the dissolution of its NWC.
In further reaction to the suit instituted by one of its chieftains, Mr. Kalu Kalu, the party submitted that the present court action challenging the NWC dissolution effected on June 25 was designed to destabilise it.
In a five-paragraph counter affidavit in opposition to the court action, the APC said that by its own constitution the National Executive Committee (NEC) has power to set up any committee, including the current National Caretaker Committee led by Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State.
In the counter affidavit deposed to by Mrs. Adenike Adelakun, APC further said that Buni and other members of its national committee are eminently qualified for their appointment and pleaded with the court to dismiss the suit.
Meanwhile, the plaintiff in the matter has asked the court to order for continued hearing of the substantive suit during the ongoing vacation of the Federal High Court.
Kalu also pleaded with the court for another order abridging the time within which the 14 respondents are to file and serve jointly or severally their counter affidavit and other processes in response to the suit.
His motion filed by Ukpai Ukairo was predicated on the grounds that his suit is a pre-election case, which ought to be decided within 180 days prescribed by the Constitution.
He claimed that time is of essence and that any delay may cause irreparable damage or serious mischief.
However, counsel to the Caretaker Committee led by Prince Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), in their own counter affidavit claimed that the suit has no particular life span, adding that the subject matter of the suit did not relate to any particular election.
Fagbemi therefore urged the court to decline the request of the plaintiff.
Meanwhile, trial judge after taking submission from parties in the matter fixed September 18 to decide whether to hear the matter during the court’s vacation or not.
Kalu, a Youth Leader of the APC in Abia State is challenging the powers of the National Executive Council (NEC) to sack the national leaders barely two years out of their constitutionally guaranteed four-year term of office.
In the suit with number: FHC/ABJ/ CS/736/2020, the plaintiff asked for an order of the Federal High Court, Abuja, setting aside the dissolution of the NWC by APC’s NEC meeting held at the presidential villa in June this year.
He is also praying the court for an order restraining the National Caretaker Committee members led by Buni from parading themselves as national officers of the APC and from usurping the functions of the party’s NWC.