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Court Refuses Ngilari’s Application To Stop Adamawa Election

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An Abuja federal high court on Friday, August 8, 2014 threw out an application by former deputy go0vernor of Adamawa state, James Bala Ngilari to stop the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC0 from conducting elections in the state following the impeachment of Murtala Nyako.

Ngilari had earlier filed an application to restrain INEC from conducting the election saying his resignation was not in tune with due process.

Ngilari’s application, argued on his behalf by popular lawyer, Festus Keyamo was denied in a ruling by Justice Adeniyi Ademola.

Thisday reports:

The judge ordered that INEC be put on notice and fixed Tuesday, August 23, 2014 for hearing of the motion on notice containing similar prayer of injunction.

However, the court granted Ngilari’s application to serve the defendants by substituted means.
The judge ordered that processes be served on the defendants by advertising same in THISDAY Newspapers.

The judge also granted leave to the plaintiff to serve court processes on the defendants outside Abuja.
Ngilari, whose office was declared vacant on Tuesday, July 15, 2014 by the state’s lawmakers after he purportedly resigned, is challenging the legality of his resignation.

The suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/545/14, has Umaru, the Speaker, Adamawa State House of Assembly, the House of Assembly, the Acting Governor, Adamawa State, Nyako and INEC as defendants.

Ngilari, who denied resigning his position within the contemplation of the provision of Section 306(1), (2) & (5) of the Constitution, said the purported resignation letter he sent to the Speaker was not meant to be acted on by the House of Assembly.

He stated, in a supporting affidavit, that “I did not submit any letter of resignation to the 5th defendant (governor) or any other person other than the 1st defendant (the Speaker).
“I only submitted a purported letter of resignation (exhibit A), to the 1st defendant but I never intended to comply with the strict provisions of sections 306 (1), (2) & (5) of the 1999 Constitution by submitting it to the 5th defendant (the Governor).

“I never intended exhibit A (the letter) to be any subject of debate or resolution by the 2nd defendant (House of Assembly), but a private correspondence between myself and the 1st defendant, hence it was marked ‘secret’.

“That exhibit A was only submitted to the 1st defendant with the intention of discussing the contents with him privately at a more convenient time to alert him at a possible action I may take at a later date because of certain political developments in Adamawa State, hence I did not submit it to the 5th defendant (as Governor of Adamawa State) as strictly stipulated by section 306(1), (2) & (5) of the 1999 Constitution.

“That I was therefore shocked to see that my letter was read and acted upon by the entire members of the 2nd Defendant when it was never addressed to them,” Ngilari stated.

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