The National Chairman of the Labour Party, LP, Barrister Julius Abure has said that issues bordering on factions in the party have been laid to rest by the judgement of the Supreme Court which emphatically stated that a dissident group led by a former Deputy National Chairman, Lamidi Apapa lacks the locus to act on behalf of the party, including to throw up candidates for election.
Barrister Abure also clarified that while a Federal High Court in Benin and the Court of Appeal have since delivered judgements which recognize him as the substantive national chairman of the Labour Party, the interim order by an FCT High Court which Apapa and his cohorts have been relying on, no longer have life after seven days based on Order 43, rule 3, sub rule 2 of the civil procedure rules.
Labour Party’s National Chairman who spoke to journalists yesterday in response to some issues raised by a former member of the party, Abayomi Arabambi in his recent interview with the Channels Television maintained that the interim order by the FCT High Court which has since expired is not and can not be superior to judgements delivered by both Appeal and High courts.
While making clarifications between the cases in Federal High Court Abuja and all the matters presided over in Benin High Court and the Court of Appeal, Abure said that all the cases are one and the same, and that they are the same subject matter, adding that his purported suspension by Ward 3 in Uromi was the root of both cases.
Abure also said that while the FCT High Court is an interim order, the case in Benin had been decided and has gone to the Court of Appeal in Benin where the court decided that all purported suspension and actions taken therefrom, actions being on such suspension had been declared null and void and the suspension nullified.
According to the LP national chairman, this was affirmed by the Court of Appeal in Benin which stated that all those who purportedly suspended him and any subsequent action taken thereto are all meddlesome interloper.
Citing Order 43, rule 3, sub rule 2 of the civil procedure rules which provides as follows: “An order of injunction made upon an application exparte shall abate after 7 days. That Sub rule 3 also provides that such an interim order can be extended upon application by the parties”,
Abure maintained that “If we single out the case in FCT, the case in FCT was an interim order and based on the rules of the FCT High Court, that court order no longer has life after seven day. In the instance case, it has lapsed except it is extended or renewed and it is not to our knowledge that it is renewed.
“You must also note that FCT High Court itself by Justice Muazu has stayed the proceedings and the order since their appeal has been entered in the Court of Appeal. The Court of Appeal has equally also stayed the order and the proceedings in the FCT High Court pending the hearing and determination of a matter at the Court of Appeal.
“All these point to the fact that the interim order has no life anymore, arising from Kogi, Imo and Bayelsa gubernatorial elections during which the Apapa faction threw up some candidates and attempted to use the courts to smuggle their candidates to the ballot.
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“All the courts, from the tribunal to the Federal High Courts including state high court, up to the supreme court have all held that Apapa didn’t have locus standi to conduct primary let alone putting up such candidates for any election. It is for this reason that only the candidates nominated by the NWC led by me participated in the elections of Kogi, Bayelsa and Imo States.
Consequently, all controversies relating to leadership of the party have been laid to rest and any person still masquerading as officers of the party is risking contemptuous punishment.
“Any person who goes around in the name of Labour Party, other than the Abure-led National Executive is illegal, is unconstitutional, is against the law and the person does so at his peril because the person stand the risk of being committed to prison for contempt of court.
“We believe very strongly that these people are still acting because they want to defraud unsuspecting members of the public. I am using this opportunity to warn right thinking members of the society of the community of Nigeria and outside not to have any dealings with Apapa and his so called executives.”
Speaking further on Arabambi allegations, Abure said, Abayomi Arabambi will be sued in his personal capacity for misinforming the people and maligning my character when he alleged that the signature of a judge was forged and that I have never practiced law in Nigeria and therefore calling to question my certification as a lawyer.
LP’s National Chairman however emphasized that in the case of Splendor Eze Oko and the case of Murphy Imansuen, the police investigation report, legal advice and forensic report had stated clearly that he never forged the signature of any candidate. He concluded by referring to them as mischievous persons.