The Federal High Court, Abuja has fixed September 11, 2017 as the date for its judgment on Senator Dino Melaye’s recall case.
The embattled Senator is currently facing a political battle to retain his position at the Senate after a recall petition was submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) by some members of his constituents.
Dino Melaye went to court to stop INEC from verifying the signatures of the petitioners, alleging that several of the signatures on the recall documents were forged signatures.
Senator Melaye’s counsel, Mr Nkem Okoro while arguing the case said some of the signatures on the recall documents belonged to dead voters and that their death certificates had been attached as exhibits to verify the claim.
Nkem Okoro while making the case said INEC had not given his client a fair hearing.
He said “The petitioners ought to have informed Melaye of the facts and circumstances upon which the alleged loss of confidence was based prior to submission of the petition to INEC. INEC upon receipt of the said petition only served Melaye a mere notice that it had received a petition for his recall. So we are challenging INEC’s action.
“They should have shown a copy of the petition to Melaye and failure to do so amounts to denial of fair hearing and a violation of the laws of natural justice.”
Mr Anthony Adeniyi, the Counsel for INEC while arguing his own case for the organisation said that Senator Dino Melaye should show to the court the signatures on the petition to whom the death certicates belong.
He said “If he attached death certificates, he should tell the court that this certificate for example, belongs to signature number 24 on the petition, but he failed to do that.”
Justice Nnamdi Dimgba adjourned the matter until Sept. 11 for judgment and also fixed the same date to deliver judgment in a suit filed by the All Progressives Congress (APC), also seeking to stop Melaye’s recall.
Justice Dimgba said both suits were similar hence their consolidation into one, so as to avoid conflicting judgements.