• Ex-Borno gov vows to file stay of execution
From Tony John, Port Harcourt and Wole Balogun, Ado Ekiti
A Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, has upheld the sack of embattled former acting National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ali Modu-Sheriff.
The former Borno State governor has, however, kicked against the judgment. He said he would file a stay of execution against it. He told newsmen in Abuja that the pronouncement of the court in Port Harcourt “cannot override a similar judgment given by Justice Hussein Buba of the Federal High Court in Lagos, which affirmed his leadership.”
Regardless, the court in Port Harcourt declared that the May 21 national convention of the party was duly constituted and declared that the dissolution of the National Working Committee (NWC) and the National Executive Committee (NEC were valid.
In his judgment on the suit filed by the PDP against Senator Sheriff and others, Justice Liman declared that the appointment of the caretaker committee of the PDP to oversee its affairs was legal and in line with the provisions of the PDP constitution.
Justice Liman said Article 31 (1) of the PDP constitution vested the powers to convene a national convention on the NEC of the party.
The Federal High Court further ruled that, in line with Article 33 (2) of the PDP constitution, the national convention of the party was supreme and could exercise the powers to dissolve the NWC and the NEC of the party.
On the issue of the abuse of court process claimed by Senator Sheriff, the court held that the plaintiffs in the case were not the same in the cases mentioned by the defendants, noting that the plaintiffs’ suit only centred on the national convention.
Meanwhile, Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose has hailed the judgment affirming the appointment of the Senator Ahmed Markafi-led National Caretaker Committee, saying: “The judgment has resolved all issues concerning the leadership of the PDP and all genuine lovers of the party must now sheathe their swords and support the committee in the overall interest of the party.”
Fayose, who reacted to the judgment through his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, said the Port-Harcourt judgment has “put paid to the antics of those who wished that the PDP was disorganised to silent opposition permanently and to rule unchallenged.”
The governor called on all gladiators in the party leadership crisis, which the court had now resolved, to put the crisis behind them and allow the party to move forward.