Court Sacks Ex-Speaker, From House Of Reps Dogara Over Defection

Court Sacks Ex-Speaker, From House Of Reps Dogara Over Defection

An Abuja Federal High Court, today, ordered a former House of Representatives Speaker, Yakubu Dogara to vacate the seat he occupies in the Federal House of Representatives, popularly called Lower Legislative Chamber.

Justice Donatus Okorowo, who presided over the court, in a judgment delivered today, held that having defected unlawfully, Dogara could no longer retain his seat.

The judgment was on a suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/1060/20 filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) against Dogara and four others.

The other defendant are: the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Dogara, who represents Bogoro/Dass Federal constituency of Bauchi State, was the Speaker of the House of Representatives between 2015 and 2019.

He defected from the PDP to in 2020 following a disagreement between him and the incumbent governor of Bauchi State, Bala Mohammed.

Justice Okorowo, in the judgment on Friday, held that having defected from PDP, the party that sponsored him, to the APC before the expiration of his tenure, Dogara was no longer qualified to retain his seat in view of the provision of Section 68(1)(g) of the Constitution.

Justice Okorowo upheld the argument by the plaintiff that, having defected from the PDP that sponsored him, Dogara ought to vacate the seat.

While holding that Dogara’s action was prohibited by law, the judge noted that the aim of Section 68(1)(g) of the Constitution was to check political prostitution among members of the legislative arm of government.

The judge, who ordered Dogara to vacate the seat forthwith, proceeded to declare the seat vacant and ordered INEC to conduct election for his replacement.

“Judgment is therefore given in favour of the plaintiffs. I hereby grant the reliefs sought by the plaintiffs,” the judge held.

Earlier, Justice Okorowo dismissed a similar suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/883/30 filed by a group – Incorporated Trustees of United Global Resources for Peace Organisation against Dogara and five others.

The judge held that the plaintiff lacked the requisite locus standi to initiate the suit.

Source-: Thenationonline