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Court: Why Saraki, Dogara, 52 MPs Cannot Be Sacked

By Judicial Correspondent



A Federal High Court in Abuja presided over by Justice Okon Abang on Friday dismissed a bid to sack Senate President Bukola Saraki, Speaker Yakubu Dogara and 52 other members of the National Assembly from the legislature on account of their defection.

The judge while agreeing that the lawmakers with the notable exception of Senator Godswill Akpbabio were not justified in defecting, he, however, ruled against the application.

The application was lodged by an advocacy group Legal Defence and Assistance Project, LEDAP, which asked the court to declare the seats of 17 Senators and 37 House of Representatives members upon their defection from the political party that brought them to office.

The lawmakers were both from the Peoples Democratic Party, and the All Progressives Congress, APC.

While affirming that the defendants acted in breach of the constitution, he, however, ruled that the applicant lacked the locus standi to bring the case. He said that the applicant did not obtain the mandate of the Attorney General of the Federation to show that he was acting in the public interest.

He, however, upheld that Akpabio was correct to defect having as he said been expelled from the PDP leaving him no option.

Besides Saraki and Dogara other defendants included Senators Rabiu Kankwaso, Barnabas Gemade, Dino Melaye, Lanre Tejuoso, Shaaba Lafiagi, Suleiman Nazif, Rafiu Ibrahim, Abdulazeez Nyako, Monsurat Sunmonu, Usman Nafada, Suleiman Hunkuyi, Ibrahim Danbaba, Ubale Shittu and lsah Misau.

Members of the House of Representatives involved in the case included Aminu Shagari, Zakari Mohammed, Ooker-Jev, Rufai Chanchangi, Abdulsamad Dasuki, Sani Zoro, Benjamin Okolo, Bode Ayorinde, Sani Rank, among others.

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