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Tukur, others ask court to strike out Baraje faction's suit

By The Citizen


The National Chairman of the People's Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, on Wednesday asked an Ikeja High Court to strike out a suit filed by a faction of the party.

Tukur made the request in a preliminary notice of objection filed by his counsel, Mr Joe Kyari-Gadzama (SAN), being heard by Justice Oludotun Adefowope-Okojie.

Alhaji Kawu Baraje's faction of PDP had filed the suit on Sept.1.

The other claimants in the suit are Dr Sam Jaja and former Osun Gov. Olagunsoye Oyinlola.

The faction had sought an interlocutory injunction to restrain Tukur and three others from parading themselves as PDP National Executive Committee members.

Joined in the suit as defendants are Mr Uche Secondus, Deputy National Chairman; Dr Kema Chikwe, Women Leader; and Mr Olisa Metuh, the National Publicity Secretary.

Arguing the preliminary objection, Kyari-Gadzama, urged the court to strike out the suit for want of jurisdiction.

Kyari-Gadzama said:'I am asking the court to strike out the case because it lacks the territorial jurisdiction to entertain the suit.

'The course of action which is the purported removal of the defendants and the election of the claimants arose in Abuja and not in Lagos.

'The subject matter of this suit is the PDP which has its registered office in Abuja and none of the defendants is resident in Lagos State.''

He also argued that the writs of summons did not comply with the mandatory requirements of Section 97 of the Sheriff and Civil Process Act because they were not signed.

'It is quite elementary that every court is a creation of law and thus a court of law has its jurisdiction limited and circumscribed by the constitution.

'The general position of the law on territorial jurisdiction of a court is that a court's jurisdiction is confined to matters that arose within it, or where the defendants reside or carry out business,'' he told the court.

Also, Mr Emeka Etiaba, counsel to Secondus, Chike and Metuh, sought the leave of the court to adopt Kyari-Gadzama's submissions.

Etiaba, therefore, urged the court to strike out his clients' application challenging the court's jurisdiction to hear the matter.

The claimants' counsel, Mr Robert Emukpaero, asked for more time to respond to the applications.

Following their submissions, the judge acceded to Etiaba's request and consequently struck out the application.

She also directed Emukpaero to file and serve his responses on the defendants not later than Sept. 20.

Further hearing in the case has been fixed for Sept. 25. (NAN)