A Federal High court sitting in Lagos has given an order stopping Saturday’s planned national convention of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party.
Justice Ibrahim Buba gave the order Monday in a suit filed by the National Chairman of the party, Ali Sheriff, the National Secretary, Adewale Oladipo and National Auditor, Fatai Adeyanju asking the court to stop the national convention pending the determination of the substantive suit.
The three national officers reportedly claimed in the suit that their tenures of office was yet to lapse.
Listed as defendants alongside the PDP is the Independent National Electoral Commission.
The three officers also asked the court to restrain the electoral body from monitoring the national convention.
They suit, which was dated May 6, 2016 numbered FHC/L/CS/61 3/2016.
In its ruling Tuesday, the court gave the following order:
— An order of interlocutory injunction as requested by the plaintiffs/applicants restraining the 2nd defendant/respondent from conducting any election into the offices of the National Chairman, National Secretary and National Auditor occupied by the 1st, 2nd and 3rd plaintiffs respectively, pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.
Mr. Sheriff disowns suit.
However, the national chairman of the PDP, Ali Sheriff, flatly denied being a party to the suit.
His spokesperson, Inuwa Bwala, in a telephone interview with PREMIUM TIMES said Mr. Sheriff was “not aware of any court case and he did not authorize anyone to go to court on his behalf”.
Mr. Bwala also maintained that Saturday’s convention would go ahead because the party itself was not aware of any court order.
“I can assure you the congress is on,” he said.
Ahead the convention, the National Executive Committee, NEC, is currently meeting at the Wadata Plaza headquarters of the party.
Tuesday’s NEC followed a meeting of the Board of Trustees, BoT, which held Monday evening.
We gathered that the two feuding parties; the Council of Elders and Mr. Sheriff, formally resolved their differences and agreed to allow the convention to go ahead.
The relationship between Mr. Sheriff and the elders, led by a former Minister of Information, Jerry Gana, had been frosty and the elders had called for the cancellation of the convention.
They also said the extension granted Mr. Sheriff and other members of the party’s National Working Committee by the NEC in March was illegal.