Judiciary vs Executive: Police Withdraw Security as Kogi Court Reserves Ruling, Adjourns sine die

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Kogi High Court sitting in Koton-Karfe on Friday adjourned sine die in a suit instituted by the state Judiciary against the Executive over alleged attempts to  illegally remove the state Chief Judge, Justice Nasir Ajanah as police withdrew security from Court.

However, before the adjournment, police officers posted to the court for security reason were allegedly withdrew by the Commissioner of Police, CP Hakeem Busari.

The situation led to tension as the Judge, Lawyers and those in the court were not comfortable with the situation.

The court has also reserved ruling on the motion seeking nullification of the April 2, resolution of the state House of Assembly recommending removal of the Chief Judge.

Justice Alaba Omolaye-Ajileye, the presiding High Court judge in the suit disclosed this in Koton-Karfe after botched sitting in the SUIT NO. HC/KK/11CV/2018 brought against the state Executive by the Chief Judge and Chief Registrar, Alhaji Yahaya Adamu.

The court resumed sitting on Friday with lead counsels to the parties in the suit adopting their written addresses on the Motion NO. HC/KK02M/201.

The claimants/applicants in the motion had contended that the House of Assembly defied the pendency of Suit and the interim injunctive Orders of the Court, to have sat and issued a resolution in respect of the matter.

They prayed for an order of the court nullifying and setting aside the resolution purportedly passed by the House at its plenary sitting of 2nd April, 2019 in defiance of the pendency of the suit.

The action of the Legislative Arm, according to the motion, also defied the interim injunctive Orders of Court by acting upon a report submitted to it by its Public Accounts Committee and resolving

R.A. Lawal-Rabana (SAN), Abeni Mohammed (SAN),  A.M.Aliyu (SAN), Tawo E. Tawo (SAN) and and three other lawyers represented the claimants/applicants.

One of the Senior Advocates, Mohammed said that the motion was brought pursuant to Order 11, Rules 1 and 2 of Kogi State High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules, 2006.

The motion has Kogi State House of Assembly; Speaker of the House;
Hon. Bello Hassan Abdullahi, chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee; The Governor of Kogi State and the Attorney-General of Kogi State as defendants/respondents.

Mohammed, while addressing the court said the claimants/applicants filed the motion supported a 16-paragraph affidavit with Exhibits “A to G”.

Adopting their written address, Mohammed said, “We rely on the affidavit and the exhibits and urge the court to grant the prayers in particular, Exhibit A and B.

Sale Sule Esq. leading one other counsel, Yusuf Goodluck for the defendants/respondents said he had filed a counter affidavit with an eight-paragraph affidavit adding that they relied on the averments.

Justice Omolaye-Ajileye, after adoption of the addresses by the counsels went on a two-hour stand down to deliver his ruling on the motion.

The jurist, after a few minutes into the two-hour stand down called counsels to the parties into his office to intimate them on the security situation as a result of sudden withdrawal of police personnel from the court.

He said that the security situation with the sudden withdrawal of police officers and men from the court and the intelligence reports reaching him, it was not safe for the court to resume sitting.

Omolaye-Ajileye, therefore adjourned the case sine die but however, told the counsels that they would be notified once the court fixed a date for ruling on the motion.

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