A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has sacked the National Executive of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) led by Mr Victor Umeh as National Chairman and Sani Shinkafi as National Secretary.
In a judgement that lasted barely one hour, Justice Abdul Kafarati declares that Messrs Victor Umeh and Sani Shinkafi cannot continue to hold office as National Chairman and National Secretary in violation of the constitution of the party which stipulates a maximum tenure of eight years.
In a swift reaction, lawyer to Messrs Umeh and Shinkafi, Mr Patrick Ikwueto, filed a notice of appeal challenging the verdict of the court on the grounds that the court lacks jurisdiction to entertain the suit.
Delivering judgment in a suit filed by Mr Maxi Okwu and four others, Justice Abdul Kafarati held that the sacked officers have been in office for more than eight years in gross violation of article 18 sub section two of the party’s constitution.
Justice Kafarati added that the valid national officers of the party were those led by Mr Okwu.
While the lawyer to Mr Umeh declined commenting on the judgement, lawyer to Mr Okwu expressed satisfaction with the verdict of the court, adding that his principal has applauded the verdict.
The sacked National Secretary of APGA, however, presented a notice of appeal the party filed saying the court erred in giving judgement against the party.
The court also directed the Independent National Electoral Commission to deal with Mr Maxi Okwu and his executive as the duly elected national officers of the APGA.
Okwu, who was elected on April 8, 2013 during an APGA Congress held at the Women Development Centre in Awka, the Anambra State capital, insists that Sir Umeh’s tenure has expired.