The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has filed a lawsuit before the Federal High Court Abuja challenging the legality of the just gazetted controversial Companies and Allied Matters Act 2020 (CAMA).
CAN disclosed this in a statement signed on Monday by its General Secretary, Joseph Bade Daramola, noting that the Christian body is not comfortable with the law.
The suit with number FHC/ABJ/CS/244/2021 was between the Incorporated Trustees of Christian Association of Nigeria, the Corporate Affairs Commission and the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment.
According to the statement, legal luminaries representing CAN included Prof J. Amupitan (SAN), Wale Adesokan (SAN), Isaac Okpanachi, Comfort Otera Chigbue, Godswill Iyoke, Dr Cyril Obika, Geraldine Mbah, Francis Oronsaye, Oluniyi Adediji.
Others included Charles Ndukwe, Emmanuel Ekong, Darlington Onyekwere, Madu Joe-Kyari Gadzama, Lama Joe-Kyari Gadzama, Rev Fr. Joseph Ilorah, Jerry Onbugadu Musa, and Amazing Ikpala.
The plaintiff counsels were led Joe-Kyari Gadzama when the case was mentioned at the Abuja court today.
On its decision to approach the court, CAN explained that “all attempts to convince the Federal government why it should not intervene or interfere with the management of the Church in the country through any of its agencies failed.”
It noted that leaders present in the court included the “General Secretary, Joseph Bade Daramola, Esq., Elder Kunle Fagbemi, Senator Philip Gyunka, Elder Tunde Adegbesan, Rev Dr Testimony Onifade, the Director, Legal and Public Affairs, Comfort Otera Chigbue, Esq., and Senator Jonathan Zwingina.”
President Muhammadu Buhari had on August 7, 2020 signed the Companies and Allied Matters Bill, 2020.
The assent which repeals and replaces the extant Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990, that lasted 30 years.
Following the presidential assent last year, prominent bodies including CAN and the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) asked President Buhari to rescind his assent to the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020.
While SERAP requested Buhari to send the legislation back to the National Assembly to address its fundamental flaws, CAN rejected piece of legislation, saying churches cannot be controlled by the Nigerian government.