Senatorial candidate writes CJN, NASS, accuses Supreme Court Registrar of stalling case against Enugu PDP

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In a petition to the Chief Justice of the Federation and the National Assembly, Comrade Chika Idoko, the African Democratic Congress’ (ADC) candidate in the 2023 Nigerian General Elections, accused Abubakar Babasoro Esq., the Deputy Court Registrar 2 (DR2) of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, of holding up his appeal in a case involving him and the Peoples Democratic Party’s Enugu State Chapter.

Shortly after the PDP’s 2022 primaries, Comrade Idoko filed a lawsuit to have all PDP candidates in the state declared ineligible for office for not submitting their membership registration to the party no later than 30 days prior to the primary, as required by the Electoral Act.

The petitioner had no jurisdiction over the matter because he was neither a PDP member nor a candidate in the party’s primaries, according to the Federal High Court sitting in Enugu, where the case was initially heard. Nevertheless, the petitioner was able to prove that the party had conducted its primaries in violation of the relevant Act provisions.

Dissatisfied, Comrade Idoko took his case to the Court of Appeal, where he was punished N37 million as general damages to the respondents in addition to losing once more.

Since then, Idoko has brought the case before the highest court, where he claims Messrs. Babasoro’s actions have caused the case to stagnate.

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Even after they agreed with the Federal High Court’s ruling that the PDP Enugu State truly violated the Electoral Act due to their failure to submit their party register within the legally specified time frame of 30 days to their Party Primary Elections, he bemoaned, “My Lord, I seek your intervention to save me considering the fine of 37 million Naira imposed on me by the Court of Appeal.”

The petitioner, who claimed to have written three prior reminders to the Supreme Court, bemoaned that the DCR2 Litigation and other Court staff members had “served as clogs in the wheel of the progress of my matter which occasioned a great injustice to me” in a letter to the CJN, a copy of which our correspondent was able to view.

He maintained that he had followed all of the Supreme Court’s rules and questioned why the justices’ refusal to schedule his case for a hearing in a pre-election case had affected him.

“My Lord, I beseech your intercession to rescue me from the 37 million Naira fine levied upon me by the Court of Appeal. This is despite their agreement with the Federal High Court’s verdict that the PDP Enugu State actually breached the Electoral Act by neglecting to submit their Party Register within the legally stipulated thirty days prior to their Party Primary Elections.” Part of the letter said this.

Comrade Idoko wrote the Speaker of the House of Representatives a petition stating that he had initially written the Supreme Court on June 5, 2023, and he was astonished to not hear back, even after two further reminders dated July 25, 2023 and August 3, 2023.

The following was part of the petition that Hon. Chidi Mark Obetta, the member representing the Nsukka/Igbo Eze South Federal Constituency, presented at plenary:

“Equity denied is equity delayed, honorable speaker sir. I have repeatedly complained about the Supreme Court’s DCR2 Litigation (Mr. YUSUF ABUBAKAR BABASORO Esq.) and other Court employees acting as roadblocks to the advancement of my case, which has caused me significant injustice.

“Sir, the speaker, I have fulfilled all the regulations set forth by the Supreme Court, and there was never a scheduled hearing for my case.

Honorable Speaker, Sir After learning from the DCR2 Litigation that the two previous letters (dated June 20, 2023, and July 5, 2023), which were minuted to his office, were all missing and that I should wait indefinitely for those missing letters to be located, I wrote to the Office of the CJN on August 1, 2023.

“Hon. Speaker Sir, if we grant that those two letters were actually missing from his desk, then what became of the most recent letter, dated August 1, 2023, which arrived in DCR2’s office on August 4, 2023, and which he has also persisted in ignoring, acting against My Lord’s directives? He hasn’t done anything with that letter for more than two months now.

“As a Nigerian, I believe there has been a miscarriage of justice if I have to bear the consequences of court officials’ illegal actions. It goes without saying that a litigant should not suffer the consequences of a lawyer’s transgression, and the same holds true for court employees.

Honorable Speaker, Sir Considering that the Court of Appeal fined me 37 million Naira notwithstanding their agreement with the Federal High Court’s decision, I am pleading with you to intervene on my behalf. Because the PDP Enugu State failed to submit their party register within the legally allotted 30 days after their party primary elections, they broke the Electoral Act.

“I demanded that the Nigerian Supreme Court have the last word in this case in order to advance the body of law in our beloved country because I was dissatisfied with the decisions made by the Federal High Court and the Appeal Court.

“I want that my case be scheduled for hearing in the interest of justice and equity as a common Nigerian. In my humble request, you would kindly utilize your good offices as Speaker of the People’s Parliament, the House of Representatives, to intervene on my behalf and make sure the Supreme Court will consider my case.

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