Francis Okiye, speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, has opened a legal suit at the Federal High Court Abuja to stop the National Assembly from taking over the state assembly’s functions.
The state’s seventh assembly was inaugurated on controversial circumstances on June 17, when nine out of 24 members-elect during elected Mr Okiye as the speaker around 9 p.m.
The National Assembly had given the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, one week to issue fresh proclamation on the assembly or it would take over the assembly’s functions.
The House of Representatives had made a similar threat.
In an originating summon and a motion on notice for interlocutory injunction filed by the speaker and the state assembly, the plaintiffs asked Justice Nkeonye Maha to restrain the National Assembly from going ahead with its plans pending the hearing on the matter.
The suit was instituted on July 17 against the Clerk of the National Assembly (first defendant), Mohammed Sani-Omolori; and the National Assembly (second defendant).
The matter, which was brought before Justice Maha on July 23, was adjourned until July 31 for hearing since the parties were yet to be served.
Lead counsel to the plaintiffs, Ola Olanipekun, on Wednesday, told the court that after the defendants had been properly served as ordered by the court, the Senate on July 30 still went ahead and passed a resolution for the takeover of the assembly if the governor fails to comply with its resolution.
The judge adjourned the case until August 7 to enable the complainants respond to the counter affidavit and written address filed by lawyers to the National Assembly.