Judge forced to adjourn over row between APC lawyers

A judge of the Federal Capital Territory high court, Bello Kawu, was forced to adjourn hearing in the application filed by the All Progressives Congress, APC, on Tuesday. The APC sought to upturn a court order restraining it from holding its national convention, scheduled for March 26.

Two lawyers, who appeared for the party and its national caretaker chairman, Mai Mala Buni, claimed they were briefed separately to take on the suit.

They are Shuaibu Aruwa, a senior advocate, and Michael Adoyi, who claimed to be representing the chambers of Musa Yakubu, a senior advocate too.

Aruwa said he was the rightful counsel in the matter, but Adoyi countered his claim. Adoyi asserted the APC and Buni had not asked his principal (Yakubu) to stop representing them.

Based on the disagreement between the lawyers, Justice Kawu decided to adjourn the matter.

“Having heard from counsel, it appears there is a disagreement over who the counsel representing the 1st and 2nd respondents will be. I, therefore, order the 1st and 2nd respondents to write to the court who their counsel is. This matter is hereby adjourned till March 17, 2022,” Justice Kawu said

TheCornet reports that Justice Kawu granted the restraining order sought by one Salisu Umoru, a member of the party, on November 18, 2021.

Meanwhile, secretary to the APC Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee, Senator John Akpanudoedehe returned to his office on Tuesday. He had stepped aside following a failed bid by some governors to change the leadership of the party. The governors had favoured Governor Sani Bello of Niger State to take over from the national caretaker committee chairman, Mai Mala Buni.

Speaking after his return, Akpanudoedehe dismissed any leadership change.

He said, “On February 28, 2022, the CECPC Chairman took a long-delayed trip abroad on health grounds, leaving behind written authorisation for other members of the CECPC to continue work in his absence, particularly the day-to-day management of the APC.

“That in his absence, sundry activities earlier scheduled for action appeared to develop fresh urgency to satisfy the timetable for the 2023 general elections released by the Independent National Electoral Commission, thus galvanising some within the CECPC to act in their best understanding of both the situation and the leadership dynamics in the committee/party.

“That all such actions were clearly identified at all times as happening in an acting or proxy capacity, and under the auspices of the substantive chairman, Governor Mai Mala Buni, contrary to widespread speculations that the chairman, secretary or some other officials of the CECPC have been removed from office or otherwise replaced. That the CECPC is intact and functional as originally constituted.”

The committee thanked the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and INEC for their firm guidance and intervention throughout the period.


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