From Scholastica Onyeka, Makurdi

A Benue State High Court sitting in Gboko, has dismissed a suit seeking to set aside the suspension of Dr Iyorchia Ayu as a member of the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP).

One Nongo Ordue had filed a suit on behalf of the 17 member executive of Ayu’s Igyorov Council Ward of Gboko Gboko Local Government Area of Benue State, seeking an order setting aside the suspension of the former National Chairman of the PDP, Ayu from the party.

The plaintiffs were also seeking an order reinstating Ayu as the National Chairman of PDP, amongst other prayers before the court.

In his reply to the suit, counsel to the PDP, Clement Mue, submitted that the judgment of the Makurdi High Court in Utaan vs Ayu, which was marked MHC/85/2023 had sufficiently addressed the issues raised in the present claim of the plaintiffs as well as the present suit was therefore caught up by a bar known in legal parlance as estoppel.

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Mue informed the court that Senator Ayu had since filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal against the decision of the court.

He argued that hearing and determining the suit would amount to sitting on an appeal against the earlier decision of the court.

The PDP counsel urged the court to hold that the suit before it amounted to an abuse of court process.

In his judgment, Justice D.M Igyuse pointed out that the plaintiffs had filed a similar claim in suit No. GHC/36/2023 between themselves as plaintiffs, including Dr Ayu who was the 18th plaintiff and the said suit was struck out by the High Court 3, Gboko on June 27, 2023 on the application of J.T Injua who told the court that the said claim had been filed by the present plaintiffs’ counsel, Nongo Ordue.

In the ruling, Justice Igyuse, agreed with the submission of Barrister Mue and accordingly dismissed the suit, describing it as the worst form of abuse of court process.


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