A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Thursday reversed the impeachment of Speaker of the Kogi State House of Assembly, Momoh Lawal.
The court also reinstated other principal officers of the House.
Justice Nnamdi Dimgba ruled that the process for the removal of the principal officers failed to conform with Sections 92(2) (c) and 96 of the 1999 Constitution.
Consequently, the position five lawmakers, Umar Imam, Friday Sani, Lawal Ahmed, Bello Abdullahi and John Abah, who supposedly replaced the impeached officers are to stand down.
Mr. Dimgba ruled that the reason given by the five lawmakers who effected the removal of the principal officers, which is that they resigned voluntarily, “is a fatally flawed premise” because they did not place any evidence of the resignation before the court.
Mr. Dimgba said even if the elected officials were impeached on the basis of voluntary resignation, “it is impossible for the meeting of the House to be quorate on 16/2/16 as to produce any legitimate decision, much less one that alters the leadership of the House”.
“By simple arithmetic, for a legislature that is down to 20 members from 25 at 16/2/16, two-thirds of that means not less than 14 (or 13) members of the House supporting the impeachment,” Mr. Dimgba said.
The speaker, alongside his deputy, Aliyu Akuh, and seven other members of the assembly, along with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) filed the originating summons through their counsel, Emeka Etiaba.
They contended that the purported impeachment of the speaker on the 16th of February, 2016 breached sections 90, 91, 92(2) (c), 95 (1) and (2) and 96(1) (2) of the Constitution and was, therfore, unconstitutional, illegal, null, and void.
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