"Court Didn't Declare Sheriff PDP Chairman Or Makarfi Committee Illegal" - PDP


Ladies and Gentlemen of the press: As you are aware yesterday 28th day
of July, 2016, the case filed by Sen. Ali
Modu Sheriff and 8 other Plaintiffs
against the Peoples Democratic Party
and the Independent National
Electoral Commission i.e. Suit No: FHC/ ABJ/CS/464/2016 came up before
Hon. Justice Okon Abang of the
Federal High Court, Abuja Division.
The Plaintiffs filed an application to
stop the National Convention slated
for 17th August, 2016 at Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
When this matter came for hearing
yesterday 28th July, 2016, Learned
Senior Counsel Ferdinand Orbih, SAN
who was briefed to represent the 2nd
defendant, the Peoples Democratic Party announced appearance for the
said 2nd Defendant PDP.
O.O. Fakunle, SAN also announced
appearance for the PDP claiming to
have been briefed by one Barr. Bashir
Maidugu who is the 5th Plaintiff in the matter.
In addition, members of the National
Caretaker Committee applied to be
joined as Parties to the case. The
application for joinder was filed by
Yunus Ustaz Usman, SAN and Mr. Raji Ahmed, SAN.
That was the only application that was
argued yesterday 28th July, 2016, and
adjourned to 15th August, 2016 for
Now on the widely reported “ORDERS” purported to have been made by Hon.
Justice Okon Abang, it is important to
note the following:
a. The motion seeking to restrain the
PDP from conducting the proposed
17th August, 2016 National Convention has not been heard by the
Court and no date has been fixed for
the hearing of same.
b. What was before the Court
yesterday was the issue of who is the
authentic legal Counsel for the PDP as between Ferdinand Orbih, SAN and
O.O. Fakunle, SAN.
The Court in determining the question
of Legal representation held that the
appointment of O.O. Fakunle, SAN by
Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff was acceptable to the Court.
It must be emphasized that at no stage
did the Hon. Judge set aside the
judgment of Justice A.M. Liman of the
Port Harcourt Division of the Federal
High Court, which could have led to the dissolution of the National
Caretaker Committee.
An Order validating Sheriff as National
Chairman could not have arisen from
the issue of proper legal
representation. For the avoidance of doubt, the
portion of the ruling relating to this is
herein- under reproduced:
“Though I have powers to nullify the
decision of the Port Harcourt Division
that recognized Makarfi Leadership, I will not do so because there is no
application to that effect before me. I
will, however allow the Court of
Appeal to do justice to that”
This is necessary because proceedings
of Courts of Law should not be subject of subjective manipulation. We are a
law abiding Committee and will always
continue to operate within the ambit
of the law.
It is not possible in Law that a Judge of
a Court of record will acknowledge the existence of a valid judgment and
proceed to make the kind of Orders
purportedly attributed to him.
Ladies and Gentlemen; it should be
very clear to you now that the ruling
of yesterday did not at any point hand over the Leadership of PDP to Sen. Ali
Modu sheriff, it did not declare the Sen.
Makarfi led Caretaker Committee illegal
and did not stop the proposed 17th
August, 2016 National Convention.