The Federal High Court sitting in Asaba, the Delta State capital has issued a contempt notice on the National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole and the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu for disobeying court orders.
The court said Oshiomhole disobeyed its order not to submit the list of Delta APC candidates to INEC while Yakubu disobeyed its order not to receive and publish such candidates’ names from Delta State for the 2019 general elections until the resolution of a pending case.
The court said despite its order dated October 17, 2018, Oshiomhole still went ahead to submit names of purported National Assembly candidates from Delta APC to INEC while the electoral body also went ahead to receive and publish such names even when the order directed both parties in the case to maintain ‘status quo’.
In its sitting on Thursday, the court warned that unless the duo obey the directives contained in the order, they will be deemed guilty of contempt be liable to a prison term.
Recall that the Chief Cyril Ogodo-led executive of the APC in Delta State had dragged the APC, Oshiomhole, INEC and one other person to court over the issue of the authentic list of candidates that emerged from the parallel primaries conducted in the state through the two contending state executives in the state.
While the primary election conducted by the Chief Ogodo-led executive produced Prof. Pat Utomi and Olorogun O’tega Emerhor as governorship and senatorial candidates respectively, the faction led by Prophet Jones Erue, who is the fourth defendant in the suit, produced Chief Great Ogboru and Senator Ovie Omo-Agege as gubernatorial and senatorial candidates respectively.
Earlier in the court, the defendants failed to file their responses, claiming that they were not given the statutory time and that the judge should first rule on their motion on notice challenging the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the suit.