By Kayode Adeoti and Daniel Ayantoye
The Kwara State High Court, sitting in Ilorin, last Thursday, reserved judgement on the prayer of online medium, Sahara Reporters’ publisher, Omoyele Sowore to award N200,000 against the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki.
Earlier, Sowore had approached the court presided over by Justice Adeyinka Oyinloye through Falana and Falana Chambers to set aside the N4billion judgment awarded against him for publishing libelous stories against the person of the Senate President.
At the resumed hearing on Thursday, Sowore, through his counsel, Stanley Ihmaruo submitted that he didn’t receive any court process from Saraki’s counsel before the judgement awarded against his client.
In lieu of this, he urged the court to award fine against the respondent who is the judgement creditor.
In Ihmaruo’s submission, he said when the judgement creditor brought a letter, he was offered an address for further correspondence which he refused to collect.
In the submission of Sarakis’ counsel, Barr Tunde Olomu, he told the court that the judgement debtor did not provide address within jurisdiction.
“The relief must be served by the court bailiff. We filed our process on 30th August and deliver same for service. We discovered to our dismay that the process filed by judgement debtor contains no address within jurisdiction as required by law.
“Failure to provide address within jurisdiction led to the inability to serve them, they violated court rules.”
Ihmaruo however prayed the court to award N200,000 fine against the judgement creditor saying they must not be allowed to benefit from inability to accost them with the court processes.
The court however directed the credit debtor, who is the appellant to file an address of service within the jurisdiction of the court to enable the respondent deliver its responses.
The court subsequently adjourned the matter to 26th October, 2017 for hearing of application of the appellant.
Meanwhile, some loyalists of Saraki were attacked by thugs suspected to have been hired by Sowore while court proceedings lasted.
However, Sowore’s supporters involved in the face off accused the Kwara All Progressives Congress (APC) for mobilising street urchins to beat them up.
A middle-aged man who claimed to be a journalist from Lagos informed his colleagues that the APC Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Sulyman Buhari and Woman Leader, Hajia Ramat Oganija sponsored thugs to beat him and his colleagues up.
He said, “There is no day the PRO will not be here and he will be outside giving his boys directives, even the woman leader, who is always inside the court. We know they sponsored thugs to beat anyone who claim to have anything to do with SaharaReporters,”
When contacted, the Kwara APC spokesman, Buhari denied the allegation of sponsoring thugs to beat anyone at the court, describing the allegation as baseless and unreasonable.
“We all know their gimmicks, the allegation is baseless and unreasonable and I don’t know why they would assume such.
“Whoever has evidence as regards my involvement in the melee at the court premises should come out. The person should please come out with evidence,” he emphasised.