Breaking: Southern leaders slam N50bn suit against Buhari, allege marginalization of region

Plaintiffs decry lopsided appointments

Breaking: Southern leaders slam N50bn suit against Buhari, allege marginalization of region
President Muhammadu Buhari

By Ikechukwu Nnochiri – Abuja

Sixteen elder statesmen and leaders of socio-cultural teams within the Southern area of Nigeria, on Monday, dragged President Muhammadu Buhari earlier than the Federal High Court in Abuja, alleging that the majority appointments because the inception of his administration in 2015, have been in breach of the 1999 Constitution and the Federal Character Principle.

The plaintiffs, led by Chief Edwin Clark, Chief Reuben Fasoranti, Dr. John Nnia Nwodo, Dr Pogu Bittus, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, Alaowei Bozimo, Mrs Sarah Doketri, Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife and

Air Commodore Idongsit Nkanga, alleged that the Southern area has been intentionally marginalized by the President Buhari-led authorities.

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They are praying the court docket to amongst different issues, decide whether or not it was not “reckless and adverse to the interest of Nigeria”, for President Buhari to acquire a mortgage facility from the Islamic Development Bank, African Development Bank, the World Bank, China, Japan, and Germany amounting to $22.7 billion (USD), for infrastructural improvement, solely to allocate the majority of the fund to the Northern area.

They are searching for a declaration that the mortgage facility purportedly for infrastructural improvement whereby lower than 1% of the quantity is to be allotted to the South East Zone of Nigeria for particular infrastructural improvement, violates part 16 (1) (a) (b) and S16 (2) (a) (b) (c) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

As properly as, “A declaration that the 1st Defendant’s procurement of any loan which would increase Nigeria’s outstanding debt by up to 30% of its GDP or which would increase its interest payment above 50% of government revenue is unconstitutional”.

Other plaintiffs within the swimsuit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/595/2020, are Senator Kofoworola Bucknor-Akerele, Prof Julie Umukoro, Elder Stephen Bangoji, Alhaji Tijani Babatunde, Mrs. Rose Obuoforibo

Mr Adakole Ijogi and Dr. Charles Nwakeaku.

Aside from President Buhari, additionally listed as 2nd to 4th Defendants within the matter are the Attorney-General of the Federation, Clerk of National Assembly, and the Federal Character Commission.

Specifically, the plaintiffs, within the swimsuit they filed by a consortium of attorneys comprising of 10 Senior Advocates of Nigeria led by Chief Solomon Asemota, SAN, and Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, are additional praying the court docket to find out:

“Whether the ability to nominate designated public officers together with everlasting secretaries, principal representatives of Nigeria overseas, which is vested within the 1st Defendant has been lawfully exercised by him because the inception of his administration from 2015 until date and Whether his actions are in breach of Sections 171(5), 814(3) (4) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

“Whether the ability to nominate Nigeria’s Armed Services Chiefs, different Commanders or prime officers of the respective Armed Forces Higher and High Commands’ General Staff ; particularly the Chief of Defense Staff (CDS), Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) and Chief of Airforce Staff (CA8); the opposite statutorily established Nigerian National Security businesses or providers , particularly: The Inspector General of the Nigerian Police (1GP), the Directors General (DGs) of the State Security Service (SSS), National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA); the Heads of National Security Associated Federal Government (FG) institutions, particularly the Nigerian Civil Defense and Security Corps (NCDSC), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Nigerian Customs and Excise Service, the Nigerian Immigration Services (NIS), the Nigerian Correctional Services (NCS), the National Emergency Management Authority (NEMA), the National Youth Service corps (NYSC), the National Security Adviser (NSA),  the Ministers of Defense, Interior, Police and the respective National Security ministries’ Permanent Secretaries’ which is vested within the 1st Defendant, has been lawfully exercised by the first Defendant because the inception of his administration and whether or not these appointments are in compliance with 81(2), 814(3)(4), 8217(3) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

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They urged the court docket to award N50billion in opposition to the Defendants to signify punitive, aggravated and exemplary damages to the constituents of the Plaintiffs for the unlawful, wrongful discriminatory and unconstitutional acts dedicated by the first Defendant in opposition to the folks of the Plaintiffs’ states and geopolitical zones.

Meanwhile, Justice Okon Abang has mounted July 10 to listen to the case, at the same time as he directed Chief Ozekhome, SAN, who represented the plaintiffs on Monday to serve the court docket processes on all of the Defendants.


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