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Friday, 6 April 2018

Melaye heads to supreme court to stop recall

Melaye heads to supreme court to stop recall

Dino Melaye, representing Kogi west in the senate, has filed an appeal at the supreme court, seeking an order to restrain the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from proceeding with his recall in the upper legislative chamber.

Melaye’s appeal is sequel to a judgment delivered by the court of appeal on March 16. The appellate court had given INEC the go-ahead on the recall.

But the lawmaker has asked the apex court to overrule the lower court.

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In a notice of appeal filed by his counsel,  Mike Ozekome, (SAN), Melaye sought an order of perpetual injunction, restraining INEC from “commencing or further continuing” with his recall or acting on the purported petition.

Melaye also asked the apex court to set aside the March 16 judgment of the court of appeal.

He sought an order declaring the petition presented to INEC by some constituents for his recall as illegal, unlawful, wrongful, unconstitutional, invalid, null and void and of no effect.

Melaye, in addition, prayed for a declaration that the recall purportedly initiated against him by INEC and on the basis of the petition was illegal since it commenced on the basis of an invalid petition.

In addition, Melaye asked the apex court to declare that the 90 days period as provided for under section 69(b) of the 1999 constitution as amended had elapsed.

According to him, having elapsed, INEC can no longer proceed on the basis of the purported petition.

He said the court of appeal erred in law ‎when it held that it was not for the court to verify the signature on the petition.

He said the court held that it was the duty of INEC, by reason of which the court failed to invalidate the petition presented to INEC.

The appellate court held that the 90 days stipulated by the constitution within which a recall process would take place had no time limitation as it could be extended.

Nnamdi Dimgba, a judge of the federal high court, Abuja, had on September 11, 2017, dismissed a suit filed by Melaye, seeking to stop INEC from initiating his recall from the national assembly.

Dimgba held that Melaye’s complaints were hasty, premature and presumptuous and therefore ordered the INEC to go ahead with its planned verification.

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