The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, on Tuesday, agreed to accelerate the hearing of the suit seeking to stop any attempt to forcefully remove the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki from office.
The court also ordered substituted service of all the processes on all the defendants in the suit that was filed before it by two former All Progressives Congress (APC) Senators, Rafiu Adebayo and Isa Misau.
Cited as defendants in the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/872/2018, are the Senate, the Senate President, Saraki, ‘the Deputy Senate President, Dr. Ike Ekweremadu,’ Senator Ahmed Lawal (Senate Leader), Senator Bala Ibn Nallah (Deputy Senate Leader), Senator Emma Buacha (Deputy Minority Leader), Clerk of the Senate and Deputy Clerk of the Senate.
Other are the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Barr. Malami (SAN), the Inspector General of Police (IG), Ibrahim Idris, and the Department of State Service (DSS).
While the court, in a ruling by Justice Nnamdi Dimgba, gave the plaintiffs the nod to serve the originating summons and motion for injunction on the 1st to 8th defendants through Clerk of the National Assembly, it held that the 10th to 12th defendants should be served by courier service.
Before slating September 6th to hear the suit, Justice Dimgba cautioned that none of the parties should take any action to overreach the proceeding before the court.
“Needless to say parties are enjoined to respect the authority of the court and protect the integrity of the judiciary.
“Parties should not take action to render the suit before this court nugatory,” Justice Dimgba held.
The plaintiffs had in an ex-parte motion they moved through their lawyer, Barr Emeka Etiaba (SAN), prayed the court to issue an interim order of injunction to preserve the ‘Res’ (subject matter) of the case, pending the determination of the suit.
“My lord, with what is going on now, parties taking laws into their hands and disregarding processes before court.
It behoves on everyone to ensure that the ship of this country does not capsize.
“We pray for this preservative order to send a signal to those who may want to truncate the leadership of the Senate.
At least, let them know that there is a subsisting order of court on the matter,” Etiaba pleaded.
Though Justice Dimgba declined to grant order of interim injunction contained in reliefs 1 to 3 of the ex-parte motion, he however asked all the parties to stay action capable of affecting the substance of the suit.
Meanwhile, in a separate suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/843/2018, the two ex-APC senators prayed the court for an order restraining the defendants from forcefully and illegally reopening the Senate chamber. Justice Dimgba adjourned the second case till September 13 following preliminary objections by the AGF and other defendants in the matter.