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Orbih’s absence stalls Secondus’ case at Supreme Court, resumes today

By Adamu Abuh and Ameh Ochojila, Abuja
07 December 2021   |   4:10 am
The Supreme Court in Abuja, yesterday, adjourned hearing in the legal battle of former National Chairman of the People Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus, who was challenging his removal from office before the expiration of his four-year tenure.

Uche Secondus

APC mulls appeal against verdict in favour of Shekarau-led faction
The Supreme Court in Abuja, yesterday, adjourned hearing in the legal battle of former National Chairman of the People Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus, who was challenging his removal from office before the expiration of his four-year tenure.

The suit, slated for hearing today, was shifted by 24 hours, following non-appearance one of the key defendants, Chief Dan Orbih.

When the matter came up, it was discovered that Orbih, who is 8th defendant, was not present in court and was not represented by a counsel.

Rather, his earlier counsel, Godwin Obla, wrote the court, informing it that Orbih had not briefed him to stand as his counsel.

Counsel to Secondus, Oba Maduabuchi, protested the development, claiming his client did not sue Orbih but that the defendant imposed himself on the excuse of being zonal chairman of PDP.

He sought a motion for substituted service to enable him serve the defendant with all court processes through the PDP zonal office.

Justice Mohammed Musa Dattijo, who led a five-man panel, fixed today for hearing of all pending applications in respect of the matter.

Besides Orbih, other defendants were: Ibeawuchi Ernest Alex; Dennis Nna Amadi; Emmanuel Stephen; Umezurike Onuoha; Godwin Pepple Manfred; PDP, Senator Suleiman Nazif; Solomon Ejike Ogbonna; Uche Emmanuel Minukwa; and Senator Samuel Nnaemeka Anyawu.

MEANWHILE, indications emerged, yesterday, that the All Progressives Congress (APC) might appeal the High Court judgment in favour of the Ibrahim Shekarau-led faction of the party in Kano State.

APC caretaker committee secretary, John Akpanudoedehe, who dropped the hint to reporters in Abuja, assured that the party would take a stand on the issue after studying the Maitama High Court judgment, which affirmed the election of Alhaji Ahmadu Haruna Danzago as chairman of the state chapter.

The scribe also faulted notion in certain quarters that the party masterminded conduct of the parallel congresses in Kano, which pitted the Shekarau-led faction against the one led by Governor Abdullahi Ganduje.

Akpanudoedehe reiterated the party’s position that it would not recognise officials that emerge as a result of parallel congresses in the state.

He said: “We are responsible leaders of the party and we won’t like to comment on a judgment that we haven’t seen. All I can tell you, now, is that we are going to apply for a Certified True Copy of the judgment. We haven’t seen it. We need to study the judgment.

“We didn’t give letters to two committees. How could we have done that? We won’t put fire in our own house. We know the people to whom we gave official letters to go to Kano and conduct official assignment. That’s the team we will accord recognition.”

Akpanudoedehe spoke against the backdrop of the decision by the Federal High Court sitting in Maitama, Abuja, which, last week, voided the ward and state congresses conducted by the Ganduje faction where Prince Abdullahi Abbas emerged as chairman of the state chapter.

This was as Malam Auwwal Ibrahim claimed his committee is the authentic body mandated by the APC national secretariat to conduct the state congress.