The Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), the Minister of Niger Delta, and Godswill Akpabio, the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and others to appear on March 10 over the constitution of the interim management committee of the Niger Delta Development Commission.
Justice Ahmed Mohammed issued the order on March 3, 2020, following an ex parte application by a group of 13 civil society groups, praying for an interim order restraining the interim management committee.
A copy of the certified true copy of the order seen by The PUNCH on Thursday showed that instead of restraining the committee as requested by the applicants, the judge rather summoned Buhari, and the other defendants in the suit to appear in court to show why the applicants’ request should not be granted.
It partly read, “An order is hereby made directing the defendants to appear before this court on March 10, 2020 and show cause why the interim order sought by the plaintiffs should not be made by the court.
“It is also directed that the motion ex parte dated and filed on December 12, 2019, motion on notice for interlocutory injunction and the originating processes, shall all be served on the defendants.
“The defendants shall also be issued with hearing notice.
“These orders are made pursuant to order 26 Rules 8(c) of the Federal High Court Civil Procedures Rules, 2019.
“The return date for the defendants to appear to show cause shall be March 10, 2020.”
The defendants summoned by the court to appear are, Buhari, the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami; Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio; Niger Delta Development Commission, the Interim Management Board of NDDC, and the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan.
The plaintiffs, represented by their lawyer, Mr. Kingdom Okere, had alleged that the interim manage committee was “constituted illegally” by Akpabio, to perform “the statutory functions of the Management Board of the NDDC”.