By Henry Umoru
ABUJA — AS part of moves to nip in the bud the lingering crisis in Anambra State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, the Benji Udeozor-led State Executive Committee, yesterday, withdrew its suit against the National Chairman of the party, Dr Okwesilieze Nwodo.
In a notice of discontinuance filed before the Federal High Court, Abuja, in suit No: FHC/ABJ/CS/657/10, and made available to Vanguard yesterday, the plaintiffs’ solicitors, Arthur Obi-Okafor, SAN, and Taiwo Abe said: “Take notice that the plaintiffs in this suit hereby discontinue with this action.
Further take notice that this action is discontinued on the ground of the subsisting judgment of the Federal Capital Territory High Court in Suit No: FCT/HC/CV/42/2009 – Benji Udeozor and 2 Ors vs. Peoples Democratic Party of Nigeria and 7 others.”
It would be recalled that Udeozor had dragged Nwodo, the PDP and six others to the Federal High Court Abuja where he urged the court to, among others, restrain them, the new Caretaker Committee for Anambra with Mr. Emma Nweze and Mr. Emma Mbamalu as chairman and secretary respectively from running, operating or conducting the affairs of the party, pending the determination of a suit filed against them.
Others joined in the suit were the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Attorney_General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mrs. Susan Ekunife and Mr. Timothy Ibeto.
The plaintiffs also urged the Court to restrain INEC from recognizing the said executive.
Also recall that Justice Hussein Baba Yusuf of an Abuja High Court had ruled that the re_instated Anambra PDP State Executive Council (SEC) be allowed to complete their aborted tenure, just as he made the order in a suit filed by the Chairman of the Committee, Mr. Benji Udeozor and two others after dismissing an application filed by PDP seeking time to file its defence.
A Federal High Court, Abuja had also restrained the INEC and PDP from recognizing the Anambra State Caretaker Committee set up by the party.
In an interim order, Justice Ibrahim Auta also restrained Messrs. Emma Nweze and Hon. Emma Mbamalu, who are Chairman and Secretary of the committee respectively, from running, operating or conducting the affairs of the party pending the determination of a suit filed against them.
Following the Court ruling reinstating the Udeozor led exco, the INEC then declined to monitor the congresses of the PDP in Anambra State as required by law.
The Secretary to the Commission, Abdullahi A. Kaugama in a letter to Nwodo dated October 22, 2010, titled: “Notification of PDP State Congress – Anambra State” said INEC would not monitor the congresses in view of the court orders restraining it on the matter.