By: Wale Ibrahim, Lokoja
A high court sitting in Lokoja has reserved reserved judgement till Thursday June 29th 2017 in the case involving Honourable Friday Sanni Makama member representing Igalamela Odolu Constituency and the Kogi State House of Assembly.
The trial judge, Justice Olusuyi disclosed while giving ruling his ruling yesterday
A member representing Igala mela\Oddly constituency, Friday Sanni has dragged the kogi state house of Assembly before the court challenging his suspension from the house for alleged anti legislative activities.
This follows written and oral submission of the counsel to the plaintiff Jubrin Okutepa (SAN) who argued that the suspension of the plaintiff was a gross violation of the fundamental mandate of the people he represents in the state.
He referred the judge to exhibit C (1) which is the vote and proceeding of the assembly describing it as a “total arrogance of power “.
He referred the judge to the case of Akomolafe versus speaker, Ondo state House of Assembly 1984 which was reported in the Nigeria constitution law report pages 355 and 366.
Another case he cited is the house of Assembly Bauchi state versus Rifkatu Samson Danna which was delivered on 19th November 2015 by the court of appeal jos who admitted that they cannot suspend a member for one minute which is believed to be trampling on the right of elected representatives.
A case between the Attorney General of Benue state versus Honourable Musa and others reported in 2008 in Nigeria weekly law report part 168 page 311 was also cited.
He said the court affirmed that elected representatives is not an employee of the executive or the legislators hence cannot be removed or suspended but rather can only be recalled by his people.
Okutepa (SAN) also cited Section 17 sub section 2 of the Nigeria constitution to back up is claim.
He called on the judge to rescue the claimants as the house failed to give him fair hearing and stating that they lacks the right to suspend him just as he submitted that the house exhibited arrogance of audacity when civil servants are suffering due to non payment of salaries.
The counsel to the lawmaker also called on the judge to stop the purported suspension and adjudged what the defendant have done to amounting to self help.
The plaintiff also sited a case of the Register trustee of the Apostolic church versus Olowoleni reported in 1990 tasking the judge to take note that when a member move a motion because his people are not being paid and is being suspended amount to the tyranny of the majority to silence the voice of a reasonable minority.
He also drew the attention of the judge to the case of Saidu Garuba and the Federal Civil Service commission reported in 1988 where the Supreme Court admit that the dismissal of the plaintiff is purely an administrative act.
According to him, when the people lose confidence in any administration it amount to breach of social contract.
Counsel to the defendant, Gabriel Saliu told the judge that the lawmakers acted upon the standing rule of the assembly.
He said all cases cited by the plaintiff are not relevant to this case urging the court to disregard them.
Responding to the position of the defendant, counsel to Honourable Makama Okutepa (SAN) said the rule of the assembly can not ignore section 6 of the Nigeria constitution which created the judiciary.
He said the Nigeria constitution remains Supreme than any other laws in the land.
He said the admission of the defendant that the action of the house is in conformity to the rule of the assembly shows that the lawmaker have acted contrary to Nigeria constitution.
The presiding judge Justice Olusuyi however reserved his judgement on the matter for Thursday June 29th 2017.