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Jonathan Impeachment: Court declines to halt House of Reps

14 September 2012, 16:14

Abuja -  The Federal High Court on Friday in Abuja declined to halt the House of Representatives from commencing impeachment proceedings against President Goodluck Jonathan.

Justice Gabriel Kolawole said that the court must be certain that the impeachment proceeding was on course.

The judge held that it was premature for the court to entertain the suit, adding that doing so would unduly impede on the functions of the legislature.

According to him, Sections 143 (1) of the 1999 Constitution required a joint impeachment resolution of both arms of the National Assembly before the president could be removed.

He explained: ``by not joining the senate as a party to the suit the motion ex-parte cannot succeed

``This may not be the proper occasion for this court to grant exparte order against the House of Representatives and the Speaker.’’

According to him, ``the court is also worried whether the plaintiff has locus standi to commence this action as the reliefs sought largely benefited the president.

``The plaintiff is, therefore, ordered to in the circumstance serve all the parties in the matter forthwith.’’

The National Chairman, African Liberation Party, Chief Emmanuel Okereke, had on Thursday urged the court to restrain the house from commencing impeaching proceeding against the president over budget implementation.

Okereke in the exparte motion joined the Speaker of the House, the House of Representatives, the National Assembly, the Attorney General of the Federation and President Goodluck Jonathan as co-defendants.

Okereke had argued that the move in July to impeach the president for non-implementation of 100 per cent of the 2012 was inappropriate.

He argued that the September deadline issued by the house for 100 per cent implementation of the budget was erroneous.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the case was adjourned indefinitely.



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