by Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
The Speaker, Federal House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, has been given 14 days’ ultimatum to re-instate elected member of House of Representatives representing Lere federal constituency of Kaduna state, or face protest.
The ultimatum, handed down on Monday in Kaduna by concerned citizens of Lere federal constituency, stated that, the elected representative, Hon Engr Suleimann Aliyu Lere, should be re-instated back to office immediately, unconditionally, by virtue of the mandate of the people and based on judgment and order of the court and valid Certificate of Return already issued to him, which has also been served on the speaker.
Addressing journalists in Kaduna on Monday, the convening leaders, Barrister Suleiman D. Lere and Dr Awwal Abdullahi Aliyu, said Engr Suleiman Aliyu Lere of the All progressives Congress (APC) originally won the February 2019 general elections, based on the conflicting judgments of Court of Appeal, Kaduna division, of November 5th, 2019, with regards to Federal House Representatives.
The convener said the enormous decisions of the Court of Appeal, which led to the removal of Engr. S.A. Lere, of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) from the seat as member representing Lere federal constituency, was successfully challenged via an application no. CA/K/12/M/2020 to set aside ex debito justtitlae, adding that in the considered ruling, the court of appeal set aside its wrong judgment on appeal nos. CA/K/EPT/NN18/2019 and CA/K/EPT/NA/19/2019, and ordered that the Certificate of Return, issued to the 2nd respondent (Lawal M Sabiu) of the PDP by the 1 respondent (INEC) be, and is hereby nullified.
The order further stressed that, “The 1st respondent (INEC) shall recognise and give effect to the Certificate of Return earlier issued to 4th respondent (Hon. Engr) Suleiman Lere.”
According to them, by virtue of Section 246(3l) of the 1999 constitution of Nigeria, as amended, the Court of Appeal’s decision is final in election proceeding pertaining National Assembly matters.
The group said failure to comply with the ultimatum would lead to ‘occupation’ of the Office of the Speaker by the electorates.