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Court Slams Labour Party ₦50,000 Fine As Party Withdraws Suit Against Rivers Lawmakers


Justice James Omotosho of the Federal High Court in Abuja has fined the Labour Party ₦50,000 in a lawsuit against defected lawmakers in Rivers State.

Naija News understands that the LP had requested the court to order the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct fresh elections in the Rivers State House of Assembly to fill the seats of the defected lawmakers.

In response, INEC, represented by human rights activist, Barrister Victor Giwa, filed a preliminary objection asking the court to dismiss the suit on the grounds of being frivolous and incompetent.

Giwa argued that the suit was an abuse of the court process and urged the court to reject jurisdiction in the case, stating that the Plaintiff lacked the necessary standing and territorial jurisdiction to bring the action.

He contested that there is a pending case at the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt Judicial Division with Suit No: FHC/PH/CS/25/2024 before Hon. Justice E.A. Obile with the same parties concerning the same subject matter which was filed earlier in February 2024.

Subsequently, after INEC filed its objection, the Labour Party approached the court to withdraw the suit.

Delivering judgement on the case, Justice Omotosho held that, “After hearing F. I. Adariku Esq. holding the brief of the Kehinde Edun for the Plaintiff applying to withdraw the suit and urging the court to strike out the case. A. S. Adisa Esq. for the 29th Defendant (INEC) not opposing but seeking for cost of ₦500,000.00 (Five Hundred Thousand Naira).

“It is hereby ordered as follows: that this matter having been withdrawn is hereby struck out. That the cost of ₦50,000.00 (Fifty Thousand Naira) is awarded against the Plaintiff in favour of the 29th Defendant.”

In addition to INEC and Governor Siminalayi Fubara, the remaining defendants in this case include Honourables Dumle Maol, Major Jack, Franklin Uchenna Nwabochi, Christopher Kagbang Ofiks, Azeru Opara, Enemi Alabo George, Granville Tekenari Wellington, Ngbar Bernard, John Dominic Iderima, Queen Uwuma Tony Williams, Loolo Isaiah Opuende, and Abbey Peter.

Furthermore, there are also Honourables Igwe – Obey Aforii, Justina Emeji, Ignatius Onwuka Defendants, Chimezie Nwankwo, Lemchi Prince Nyeche, Barile Nwakoh, Emilia Lucky Amadi, Nkemjika Ezekwe, Davios Arnold Oxobiriari, Nwankwo Sylvanus, Gerald Oforii, and Wami Solomon among the defendants.

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