Benin High Court Reverses Removal of Council Chairman

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Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City

A High Court in Benin, capital of Edo State has nullified what it termed the unlawful removal of Estako East Local Government Chairman, Hon. Aremiyau Momoh.

Momoh was suspended and subsequently removed by Governor Godwin Obaseki on allegation of misappropriation of funds as well as his alignment with the removed National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomole.

However, Momoh approached a state High Court in a suit B/205/2019.

The trial Judge, Justice D. I. Okungbowa, declared that the valid and de jure elected Chairman of Etsako East Local Government Area Council of Edo State by Edo State High Court No 4, Benin City under Hon . Justice D.I. Okungbowa in suit no B/205/2019.

In his judgment delivered yesterday, Justice D.I. Okungbowa of High Court 4, declared the removal of Hon. Momoh by Edo State Governor as null and void.

Justice Okungbowa also directed Momoh to resume office as Chairman immediately.

The trial judge, granted all the prayers contained in the originating Summons filed on behalf of Momoh by his Counsel, West-Idahosa & Co.

The Judge held that Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki and the state Government failed to comply with the Provisions of Sections 20 and 21 of Edo State Local Government Law, 2000 (as amended) by failing to consult with the Edo State House of Assembly as provided by Law before suspending Momoh.

The court further held that since the purported suspension was void in law, every other action predicated on it was invalid and awarded the sum of #250,000 as cost in favour of Hon. Momoh.

The court dimissed the notice of preliminary objection filed by Edo State Government challenging the competence of the suit. Similarly, the motion filled by Edo State Government to arrest the judgment of the court was also dismissed.