The Judiciary yesterday came under the spotlight again as it sang discordant tunes over the August 17, 2016 national convention of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, scheduled for Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.
While Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja gave an interim order suspending the convention late Monday afternoon, Justice Ibrahim Watila of the Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, ordered the PDP to go ahead with the exercise and directed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to monitor the convention.
Justice Walita also directed the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), the Rivers State Commissioner of Police, the Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS) to provide security for the convention billed to hold tomorrow (Wednesday).
The court also ordered that the police, DSS and INEC be served by substituted means through their respective offices in Port Harcourt.
The judge delivered the ruling in a motion on notice filed by the Secretary of the PDP National Convention Planning Committee, Senator Ben Obi, for himself and other members of the Committee against the IGP, the Commissioner of Police, Rivers State, the DSS and the INEC, in suit number FHC/ PH/CS/585/2016.
The judge also held that the July 4, 2016, judgment of the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, which gave recognition to the Ahmed Makarfi-led caretaker committee that is organizing the national convention tomorrow, had not been appealed against, saying it behooved the court to protect that judgment.
The court added that there was no court injunction against the forthcoming August 17, 2016 National Convention in Port Harcourt during the hearing of the application by Senator Obi.
The suit was adjourned to today (August 16) for the hearing of the originating summons filed by Senator Obi.
In his reaction to the ruling, counsel for the applicant, Barrister Wori Nyeche Wori, said with the granting of the interlocutory injunction, the party has the legal backing to carry on with the August 17 PDP National Convention.