Court Fixes July 16 For Suit Challenging Gov. Bello Matawalle’s Defection

Gov. Bello Matawalle

A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Monday, fixed July 16 to hear a suit challenging the defection of Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Justice Inyang Ekwo fixed the date after listening to the ex-parte motion of the plaintiffs’ counsel, Kanu Agabi, SAN, praying the court for an order to serve the first and 2nd defendants by substituted means through pasting the originating process at Zamfara State Liaison Office in Abuja.

Justice Ekwo granted the prayer and adjourned the hearing of the substantive suit until July 16.

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The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that two members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from the state; Sani Kaura Ahmed and Abubakar Muhammed had, in a suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/489/2021, asked the court to sack the governor over his defection.

Matawalle, APC and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) are 1st to 4th defendants respectively, while the PDP is listed as a party to be joined in the suit.

The plaintiffs are contending that, in view of an earlier judgment of the Supreme Court, to the effect that the APC had no candidates in the 2019 Governorship Election in Zamfara, having not conducted valid primaries, it would be unlawful for Matawalle to retain his position offices while defecting from the PDP to the APC, thereby transferring PDP’s victory to the APC.

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They want the court to, among others, declare that Matawalle must resign before defecting.

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