COURT DISMISSES APPLICATION TO STRIKE OUT EX-ANAMBRA ELECTORAL COMMISSION BOSS' SUIT
BY VINCENT UJUMADU
Awka-An Anambra High Court sitting in Awka has dismissed a preliminary objection by the state government against the suit challenging the removal from office of former Chairman, Anambra Independent Electoral Commission, Prof. Titus Eze.
Delivering the ruling on Monday, Justice Hope Ozoh, held that the application seeking to strike out Eze's suit lacked merit.
The Attorney-General of the state, Mr Emmanuel Chukwuma, had raised a preliminary objection that the plaintiff (Eze) did not serve a pre-action notice on the second respondent which is the State House of Assembly.
Chuwkuma argued that in line with the State Proceedings Law, the court, therefore, lacked jurisdiction to hear and determine the suit and urged the court to strike it out.
However, the court aligned itself with the argument of the plaintiff's counsel, Mr Nnamdi Ibegbu, SAN, that the House of Assembly was not a public officer for which a pre-action notice must be served.
Ozoh, therefore, proceeded to hold that the court had the jurisdiction to hear the matter and adjourned to Jannuary 16, 2012, for final adoption of written addresses.
Eze's sack by the state government three months ago followed allegations of financial misappropriation levelled against him.
The state government had since appointed an acting chairman, Mr Sylvester Okonkwo to run the affairs of the commission, especially plans by the government to conduct Local Council elections, pending the determination of the suit.