By Marie-Therese Nanlong
A High Court sitting in Jos, Plateau State has struck out the suit challenging the election of the State Executive of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC.
With this development, respite has come the way of the Rufus Bature led executive as a parallel-group had approached the court to sack Bature and his group whom they accused did not buy forms to contest their respective positions.
In his ruling on motion on notice seeking for an order of interlocutory injunction amongst other injunctive reliefs restraining the defendants from parading or calling themselves Plateau State Executive Committee members of the APC, Justice S.P. Gang sustained the application for withdrawal of the suit and accordingly struck out the suit.
It would be recalled that one Ishaya Itse and five others, had in a motion on notice vide Suit No.PLD/J500M/21, approached the Court on 27th October 2021 with several claims bordering on the October 16 State APC Congress in which the defendants emerged victorious as the duly elected State Officials of the Party.
Counsel to the defendants/respondents, Garba Paul (SAN), and counsel to applicants/claimants Barr. N D. Gwaison did not raise objections to the decision of the applicants to withdraw the suit which they said was strictly a family affair both parties being members of the same political party.
This turn of events has laid to rest the controversies concerning the legitimacy of the new State APC Exco.
Commenting on the outcome of the judgment, Rufus Bature, according to a statement by Sylvanus Naming,
APC State Publicity Secretary, Bature saluted the courage and understanding of Ishaya Itse and his group, describing them as “democrats who have interest in the development of the party in the state.”
Meanwhile, the Party executives have met with its members in the State House of Assembly at the Party Secretariat at Ewarewah House, Jos.
It was gathered that the embattled Speaker, Abok Ayuba was absent while the Government recognized Speaker, Yakubu Sanda, led other members to attend the meeting.
The State Party Chairman, Rufus Bature who was himself a former member of the House of Assembly, expressed delight over their honoring the invitation to the meeting and said he was “happy that peace has fully been restored in the House of Assembly after the change of its Speaker two months ago.”
He stated, ”Your unity is your integrity. That is why you are called Honourable members. You should be seen to be honorable at all times. You cannot be in the same party and be castigating each other.”
He commended the members for their quick passage of the 2022 budget and expressed happiness that the House has come back strong and advised them to work in synergy with the governor of the state to provide the dividends of democracy to the people at the grassroots.
He warned that the party would not tolerate acts of indiscipline or anti-party activities of any kind from its members, stressing, the party believes in a reward system and would introduce competition among the wards especially with regards to membership registration, especially as they would soon embark on a tour of all the 17 Local Government Areas to get a first-hand view of their challenges.