By Davies Iheamnachor – Port Harcourt
A Rivers State High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has upheld the suspension of Uche Secondus as the National Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP.
The court in Port Harcourt on Friday ordered a perpetual injunction restraining Secondus from parading himself as the national chairman of PDP.
Justice O. Gbasam maintained in Suit No: PHC/2183/CS/2021 between Ibeawuchi Ernest Alex, Dennis Nna Amadi, Emmanuel Stephen Umezirike Onucha (as claimants) and Prince Uche Secondus and People’s Democratic Party (defendants), that the suspension of the embattled chairman subsists.
On resumption of ruling on the matters, counsel for Secondus (1st Defendant) Godfrey Uwalaka, had attempted to stop the court’s judgement by making an oral application that an appeal had been entered on the matter.
But, Counsel for the claimants, Nwosuegbe Eze, urged the court to discountenance the purported appeal, noting that there was no motion before the court for stay of execution and no motion to arrest the ruling of the court.
However, the trial judge, Justice Gbasam, dismissed the first defendant’s counsel’s oral application for lacking in merit, stating that it was not enough reason to stop the judgement.
Gbasam, after careful review of the submissions made by both parties, said the court has not seen any ground to rule against its earlier judgement delivered on August 23, 2021.
On the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the matter, since the issue of the suspension was in contention as it borders on internal affairs of the party, the trial judge declared that applications challenging the court’s right to hear the matter also lacked merit.
Also, on the issue of fair hearing raised by counsel for PDP (second defendant), Eugene Odey, the judge said the counsel had ample time to represent the client, noting that the issue of fair hearing has no basis.
Gbasam said it has been noticed that parties (counsels), who have bad cases and could not prove their cases have always used the issue of fair hearing to disturb the court, noting that Secondus was suspended by his ward in Ikuru Town, in Andoni Local Government Area, for anti-party activities.
He explained that by the virtue Secondus suspension, the first defendant has lost the right to function as national chairman of the party and any function carried out by him under suspension is invalid.
The court held: “I hereby hold that the court has jurisdiction to hear the suit. I hold, therefore, that his suspension and having been acknowledged by the party in the state, is valid. He shall not so act as national chairman. His suspension still subsists.”