Tukur fails to stop Baraje-PDP

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Nnamdi Felix / Abuja

For the second time since the factionalisation of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, a Federal High Court siting in Abuja on Friday turned down a request brought by the Bamanga Tukur’s faction, urging the court to rein in the Abubakar Baraje faction, with an interim order pending when the substantive suit would be heard.

The Bamanga Tukur led faction had asked the court to grant an order of status quo pending the determination of the suit it brought seeking to restrain the Abubakar Baraje’s faction from parading itself as the recognized faction of the party.

In his ruling on the application, Justice Elvis Chukwu held that it did not observe any tardiness on the part of the new faction as claimed by the Bamanga Tukur led faction. He however consolidated the application challenging its jurisdiction and the substantive suit.

The court also held that it did not notice any negligence on the part of the new faction in filing its processes and entering an appearance against the position of the Tukur faction.

The court thereafter adjourned till 20 September to hear the substantive suit.

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The Baraje faction is however asking the court to strike out Tukur’s suit on the ground that the court lacked jurisdiction to entertain same.

Tukur and 11 national officers of the PDP had last Friday through an ex parte motion asked the court to stop Baraje, Dr. Sam Jaja, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar from parading themselves as the national executives of the party.

Baraje’s faction’s lawyer, Mr. Ahmed Raji, a senior advocate of Nigeria, informed the court that they have filed a preliminary objection challenging the court’s jurisdiction to hear the suit.

In the preliminary objection, the Baraje group contended that the subject matter of the suit has to do with domestic affairs of the PDP and that the suit should have been brought before a state or Federal Capital Territory high court, instead of the Federal High Court.

He argued that the action is incompetent and that the court lacks the jurisdiction to hear it since the subject matter revolves around the domestic affairs of Peoples Democratic Party.

Tukur’s group’s lawyer, Chief Tochukwu Onwubufor, also a senior advocate of Nigeria, asked the court to grant an interim order directing the two parties to maintain the status quo.

The case was adjourned till 20 September.

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