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Suspension: Why We Can’t Recall Ndume, Senate Tells A-Court

The Senate has adduced reasons it will not lift the six months suspension handed to Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume, who represents Borno South Senatorial District.
The upper legislative chamber, through its lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, said it disagreed with the verdict of the Federal High Court, Abuja, which not only voided Ndume’s suspension from the Senate since March 30, but also directed that he should be paid all his outstanding salaries and allowances.

Consequently, it has asked the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal to set-aside the judgment, which was delivered last Friday by Justice Babatunde Quadri. According to the Senate, the high court lacks the jurisdiction to entertain the suit Ndume filed to challenge his suspension.
However, in its appeal, the Senate maintained that the plaintiff wrongly joined several causes of action in his originating summons. It argued that an action for the enforcement of fundamental rights to fair hearing could only be brought against a court or a tribunal, established by law as held by the Supreme Court in several current cases, and not against committee of a legislative body.
Besides, the appellants contended that by the provisions of sections 3 and 30 of the Legislative Houses (Powers and Privileges) Act, the high court lacked requisite jurisdiction to hear the suit of the Plaintiff. It has, therefore, urged the appellate court to stay execution of the judgment pending hearing and determination of the appeal.

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