By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
The Supreme Court, on Friday, affirmed Chief Edozie Njoku as the National Chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA.
The apex court, in a unanimous decision by a five-man panel of Justices, admitted that it had in a judgement it delivered in 2021, erroneously wrote the name of Chief Victor Oye, as chairman of the party.
In the lead ruling that was delivered by Justice Mohammed Lawal, the court said it has the powers to review its judgement and correct such “accidental slip or error”, when it is brought to its attention.
It, therefore, issued an order, expunging the aspect of the judgement where Oye’s name was reflected as the national chairman of the party.
The ruling followed a motion that was brought before the court by Chief Njoku.
Njoku had in an application he filed through his team of lawyers led by Mr. Chike Onyemenam, SAN, urged the apex court to correct a typographical error in its judgement, which he said wrongly handed the leadership of the party to Chief Oye.
The Applicant noted that the Supreme Court had in a letter it wrote to him on January 19, wherein it addressed him as the National Chairman of APGA, asked him to approach it by way of a motion to regularize the said judgement.
Relying on Order 8 Rule 16 of the Supreme Court Rules, Njoku prayed the court to correct the said error in the lead judgment it delivered on October 14, 2021, in an appeal that was presided over by Justice Mary Peter-Odili (Rtd).
He specifically urged the apex court to correct an accidental slip at Page 13, lines 3 to 4 of its judgment, where instead of writing the name of ‘Edozie Njoku’ who was unlawfully removed from his position as the person that was validly elected as National Chairman of APGA at the convention the party held at Owerri in 2019, mistakenly inserted the name of Victor Oye, who was not a party in the substantive suit that gave rise to the appeal.
The apex court, on Friday, held that there was merit in the application, even as it granted same.
It will be recalled that Police had earlier dragged Njoku before a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, alleging that he forged a judgement of the apex court.
Police, in the charge marked: CR/12/2022, told the court that Njoku presented the said forged judgement as genuine, with the intention of misleading the public and ridiculing the judiciary.
He was further accused of forging the letterheaded paper of Justice Odili who had since retired from the apex court bench.
However, Njoku pleaded not guilty to the charge, even as he has approached the Supreme Court to exonerate himself.
Meantime, reacting to the decision of the apex court, Njoku, declared that it was a victory for the party which he said would have done better in the concluded general elections.
While extending the olive branch to Chief Oye, Njoku urged Governor Charles Soludo of Anambra State to promptly bring the factions together for a roundtable discussion to chart a way forward for the party.
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