A high court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Apo, Abuja has nullified the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) dismissal of Buruji Kashamu, a senator of Ogun East and the party’s state chairman, Adebayo Dayo.
Following his 30-day suspension which elapsed on January 9, the PDP on July 24, announced the expulsion of Mr Kashamu and his key supporters from the party.
But Mr Kashamu said that his expulsion from the PDP by the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party would not stand since they did not have the right to take any disciplinary action against him.
In his ruling on Wednesday, the judge, Valentine Ashi, held that the purported expulsion of Mr Kashamu and his supporters was unlawful because it was done in flagrant disobedience of a subsisting order of the court made on December 7, 2017, which was restated on January 9, 2018.
It directed parties not to do anything to jeopardise the hearing of the pending case.
Mr Ashi while restating the court order of January 9, 2018, added that the PDP must not carry out any disciplinary action against the defendants without first, having recourse to the court.
Mr Ashi, who nullified the expulsion, also set aside the PDP’s letter, dated August 1, 2018, conveying the expulsion to Mr Kashamu and Mr Dayo.
Mr Ashi therefore ordered the PDP’s chairman, Uche Secondus to show why the court’s disciplinary measure should not be deployed against him for aiding his party to violate a valid court order within 48 hours of his receipt of the court order,
Mr Ashi also ordered Mr Secondus to show why he should not be referred to the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and minister of justice for prosecution before the magistrates’ court of the FCT, for obstructing the course of justice.
However, Mr Ashi’s ruling was on an application filed by Mr Kashamu and Mr Dayo, which was argued for the applicants by their lawyer, Charles Ndukwe.
The PDP had, on December 4, 2017, sued Mr Kashamu and four others. It sought among others, order restraining Mr Kashamu and the other defendants from preventing it from carrying out its legitimate activities, including its national convention that was slated for December 9 and 10, 2017.
Meanwhile the court on December 7, 2017 granted PDP’s ex-parte motion and ordered parties to maintain the status quo and asked them to refrain from doing anything that is capable of jeopardizing the hearing of the pending interlocutory application and the substantive suit.
On January 9, 2018, the court, upon complaint by Messrs Kashamu and Dayo, set aside their suspension by the PDP. The court said the suspension was carried out by the PDP while the case was still pending.
In the ruling, Mr Ashi agreed with Mr Kashamu and Mr Dayo that the order made on December 7, 2017 and restated on January 9, 2018 was still binding on PDP and all parties despite the party’s abandoning of the case, which led to it being struck out.
Mr Ashi noted that even when the main suit was struck out, the counter-claim filed by Mr Kashamu and other defendants was still pending. He therefore rejected PDP’s objection to the suit and held that the suit Mr Kashamu filed against the party before the Federal High Court, Abuja was different from the one before his court.