Concise News reports that Chairman of the tribunal, Justice A.A. Adeleye, sitting with two other colleagues, Justice C.M Ken-Eze and Justice A.A Mamadi, in his inaugural speech, assured lawyers and petitioners that the law would take its rightful course.
However, Justice Adeleye adjourns the first case on the list of petitions between Mrs Mimi Adzape-Orubibi (APC) and Dr Gabriel Suswam (PDP) and INEC to May 9, for a pre-trial conference. Mrs Adzape-Orubibi is challenging the return of Suswam by INEC as the winner of Benue North East Senatorial District election.
The second case on the petition list is between PDP’s incumbent House of Representatives member, Samson Okwu, and APGA’s David Ogewu, over the Oju/Obi Federal Constituency seat. It was also adjourned to May 16, for the pre-trial conference since pleas had not been completely entered.
Okwu’s lead Counsel, Kenneth Ikonne, drew the attention of the tribunal to Paragraph 18 (1) of the practice direction which provided that pre-trial comes only after final reply, stressing that in the circumstances concerned, he was of the view that pre-trial could not go on.
Meanwhile, Ogewu’s Counsel, N.L Ikyaagba, agreed to come before the tribunal on a later date to do the needful.