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Absence of counsel stalls case against hotel, 88 persons over ban on alcohol sale

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A Zaria city Chief Magistrate Court on Thursday adjourned until Sept. 8, hearing in a suit filed by Sabon Gari Local Government against Janex Hotels and Bar and 88 others.

The case was instituted by the local council on July 16, accusing owners of the hotel of operating without a valid license.

The case which came before the chief magistrate, Zainab Garba for hearing, could not go on due to the absence of the counsel for Sabon Gari local government, the complainant.

Garba adjourned the matter for the hearing of the substantive case and motion on notice filed by the defendants to Sept 8.

Earlier, Solomon Kaine, counsel for the defendants told the court that the complainant represented by Muhammad-Tukur Jibril was in court on Aug. 14, the last adjourned date, adding that the complainant’s counsel was neither in court nor gave reasons for his absence.

Kaine also told the Court that the complainant had served him with notice of withdrawal of the case.

However, the presiding magistrate said such notice was not before her.

The defendants, on July 17 through their counsel, filed a motion on notice seeking to vacate the interim order made on July 16 and also challenged the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the case.

In her ruling on August 14, the chief magistrate struck out the exparte application alongside the motion on notice dated July 16, and motion on notice filed by the defendants, for lack of due process.

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