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Citing Infantile desperation, Supreme Court kicks out Sheriff
Senator Ali Modu Sheriff

Citing Infantile desperation, Supreme Court kicks out Sheriff

 

The Supreme Court has Cited infantile desperation as what led  Senator Ali Modu Sheriff to shop from one court to the other in attempt to continue as Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party. It therefore, kicked him out.

 

The apex court also affirmed the appointment of Senator Ahmed Markafi as the chairman of the national caretaker committee of the party.Ending the two year feud that has torn the party apart.

In a unanimous judgment, the apex court reinstated Makarfi, who was earlier sacked by the Port Harcourt division of the Court of Appeal.

Justice Bode Rhodes-Vivour, who read the lead judgment, written by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, held that contrary to the majority judgment of the Port Harcourt division of the appellate court, the suit filed by Makarfi faction before the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt was not an abuse of court process.

The apex court also held that the national convention of the PDP held on May 21, 2016, rightly and constitutionally removed Sheriff.

It said the convention acted rightly and was not in breach of any aspect of the PDP constitution by setting up the Makarfi-led national caretaker committee.

Giving reasons why Sheriff cannot be PDP national chairman, their lordships accused him of engaging in forum shopping, saying he “displayed infantile desperation to cling to office at all cost.

”It is on record that Sheriff in his  fatal desire to perpetuate himself in office had filed 10 cases in one year, some of which he abandoned and it will remain in the shelves and gather dust forever”, the court added.

The court warned politicians to desist from this action which, according to them, is capable of dragging the name of the judiciary in the mud.

The apex court awarded the cost of N250,000 against Sheriff and other respondents in the matter.

Not satisfied, the apex court also warned heads of courts to be careful in assigning cases with similar nature and content to different judges, saying they should rather assign such to a single judge to handle.

“This court frowns at the habit of assigning cases filed by politicians with the same subject matter to different judges”, Justice Rhodes-Vivour

The five-member panel of the apex court  unanimously agreed to the lead judgment by Justice Rhodes-Vivour. Other members of the panel are, Justices Onnoghen, Tanko Muhammad, Kayode Ariwoola and Dattijo Muhammad.

The apex court also warned judges to  decline handling suits that they are aware that some of their colleagues are already handling.

The Court of Appeal sitting in Port Harcourt had affirmed Ali Modu-Sheriff, former governor of Borno State, as the authentic national chairman of the party.

The court had in a split judgment  decided that Sheriff was the chairman of the PDP, thereby, setting aside the legitimacy given to Makarfi last year by a Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

The two Senators had been embroiled in various litigation in Port Harcourt, Lagos, and Abuja courts, obtaining conflicting judgments over who becomes the party’s chairman at the national level.

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