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General News of Wednesday, 11 May 2022

Source: www.legit.ng

Court to begin hearing on members of council of state

Members of the Council of State Members of the Council of State

A Federal High Court sitting in Awka has fixed a date for a hearing on the eligibility of former military heads of state as members of the Council of State.

The hearing by the court follows a suit filed by a constitutional lawyer challenging Ibrahim Babangida, Abdulsalami Abubakar, and Yakubu Gowon's eligibility as members of the council.

At the mention of the case, the defendants in the matter were absent leading to an adjournment of the matter to Wednesday, June 15The fate of eligibility of past military heads of state of Nigeria in the council of state will be determined by the Federal High Court sitting in Awka Anambra state on Wednesday, June 15, Daily Trust reports.

A hearing on a suit challenging the eligibility of all former military heads of state as members of the council will commence on the said date.

This follows the filing of a suit by an Anambra-based constitutional lawyer, Nwafili Okwuosa, who prayed the court to stop Nigeria's past military heads of state from participating, parading and collecting benefits and emoluments as members of the council of state.

In his suit, Okwusa said that the 1999 constitution as amended does not recognise the take over of government in Nigeria by any means not provided for in the said law.

He argued that the provision of section 1 (2) of the extant 1999 constitution as amended is inconsistent for any person to ascend to power through means not provided.

The lawyer also added that by the constitution, General Yakubu Gowon, Ibrahim Babangida, and Abdulasalmi Abubakar among others are not entitled to life long pension, emoluments, allowances, peck or whatever called under prevailing order.

Okwusa further sought a court order mandating all the past military heads of state to refund all money they had collected as members of the council of state.

When the case was called for hearing, none of the defendants was present.

Reacting to the development, Okwuosa said that despite being properly served, none of the defendants deemed it fit to respond apart from the accountant general of the federation who was represented in the court.

Also joined in the suit are the Attorney General of the Federation and the Accountant General of the Federation.

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