Monday, 22 May 2017

Abia guber: Settle with Ikpeazu, Supreme Court admonishes Nwosu

From Godwin Tsa, Abuja
The Supreme Court, yesterday, admonished  Friday Nwosu, a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship aspirant in Abia State to settle his political differences with Governor Okezie Ikpeazu in the interest of the people of the state.
Besides, the apex court said it has already given its judgment on the governorship crisis in the state.
The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen,  who gave the admonition said: “We have already taken  decision on the matter and we are not speaking with both sides of our mouths because we are not politicians.
“There is only one Supreme Court. Please, go and settle and allow the people to enjoy the dividends of democracy.”
Nwosu is challenging the nomination and emergence of Ikpeazu on the grounds that he provided offensive tax papers to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
He is contesting that between the month of January and June 2014,  Governor Ikpeazu was not a public servant and could not have paid his taxes appropriately under the Pay-As-You-Earn (PAYE) system.
His lawyer, Mr. Solomon Umoh (SAN) who filed an application dated March 15, 2017 seeking for leave to appeal had told the Supreme Court Panel of Justices led by the CJN that the Court of Appeal had stayed proceedings  to await the outcome of the Supreme Court judgment in the appeal by Dr. Samson Ogah.
The lawyer said he intended to go back to the Court of Appeal but was helpless in view of the judgment of the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court had on May 12, 2017 affirmed the election of Governor Ikpeazu after dismissing the appeal for lacking in merit.
Umoh had told the court that he needed its intervention on the matter.
But responding to the request, the Chief Justice of Nigeria admonished the lawyer on the need to settle the dispute out of court.
Justice Onnoghen said: “We have to accept that there must be dispute and there must be resolution because in all of these, the people that lose are the common people who are the electorate.
“There must be peace in the state so that the people who voted can get the dividends of democracy. In this country, our politicians spend three years out of the four year tenure fighting in court over elective positions. Not too much is given to governance.
“We need to have a re-think. We (Supreme Court) are not here to elect or appoint a lawmaker. We have so many pre-election appeals and it is the people that suffer at the end of the day.
“We have already taken a decision on the matter and we cannot be be speaking with both sides of our mouths because we are not politicians. There is only one Supreme Court. Please go and settle and allow the people to enjoy the dividends of democracy.”
- A court had earlier ordered a temporary forfeiture of the $5.8 million claimed to be owned by Dame Patience Jonathan - The Federal High Court in Lagos has now fixed a date for the hearing of the case after Dame Jonathan's lawyer appeared in court Justice Mojisola Olaterogun of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos state has fixed September 24, 2017 for hearing in the application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) seeking a final forfeiture order on the sum of $5.8 million allegedly belonging to Patience Jonathan, wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan. According to the EFCC, the adjournment came following an order by the Court of Appeal on stay of proceedings sought by Jonathan. The court had, on April 26, 2017, ordered an interim forfeiture of the money following an ex-parte motion filed by the EFCC. Read more: https://www.naij.com/1106074-court-adjourns-patience-jonathans-58m-case-september.html
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