The Delta State High Court in Asaba has restrained Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State, as the caretaker committee chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Other members of his Caretaker/ Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) of the APC were also affected by the party, Vanguard Newspaper reported.

The judge, Onome Umukoro, also issued an interim order stopping the scheduled APC Local Government Congress in Delta State slated for September 4, 2021.

He then adjourned till September 7 for further hearing.

APC Deputy Chairman, Olorogun Ayomanor, leading other officials of the Delta APC had approached the court to challenge the outcome of the Ward Congresses in the state.

In an ex-parte application, which was heard on Wednesday, the claimant’s lead counsel, Daubry Richard, prayed the court to grant the seven prayers sought.

He submitted that going ahead with the Saturday, September 4 local government congress in Delta State would cause more damage to his clients.

Plaintiff’s prayers

Principal among the prayers sought by the claimants was an order “restraining the 2nd – 14th defendants/respondents from further acting or parading themselves as the members of the Caretaker/ Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) of the APC”.

They also sought as an alternative prayer, an order of interim injunction “restraining the 2nd – 14th defendants/respondents from conducting the Local Government and State Congresses slated for September 4, 2021 or any other date, and other congresses of the 1st Defendant in Delta State, pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice already filed and served”.

The lawyer to the defendants, Robert Emukpoeruo, had initially challenged the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the suit.

He later dropped the challenge to ask that certain parties be joined as co-defendants in the suit.

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In his response the claimants’ lawyer, Mr Richard, noted that the matter before the court was an ex-parte motion, which did exempts adverse parties from participating in its hearing.



Ruling

In his ruling, Mr Umukoro granted seven days order of interim injunction restraining Governor Buni and the CECPC members from conducting the Local Government and State Congresses slated for September 4, 2021.

The court also barred Mr Buni from parading himself as the chairman of the national caretaker committee of the party, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice already filed and served.

Umukoro also ordered that Mr Buni and others at the national leadership be served originating summons through any officer or staff of the APC at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja.

The suit was adjourned till September 7, 2021, for further hearing.

Apart from the suit, there are other ones specifically challenging Mr Buni’s competence to lead the party as its chairman given his position as a serving state governor.

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