…INEC’s decision to issue certificate of return to Issaac Alfa is a misnomer
A legal practitioner, Barr. Abdul Sadiq Esq. has urged the senate and people of Kogi East to reject the judgment of the High Court that sacked Senator Atai Aidoko Ali.
Speaking during a radio program monitored from Abuja, Sadiq warned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the consequences of issuing a certificate of return without carefully studying the implication of the judgment.
He said the constitution of Nigeria was unambiguous about the provisions of the law relating to the procedure of engagements and disengagements of members of the National Assembly and lawmakers
“The ambiguity occasioned by the judgment of the Federal High Court by giving order of judgment to the Clerk of the Senate will trigger constitutional crises. Its un-applicabiilty will give a leeway to legal interpretation of Kogi East senate judgment when studied properly.
“According to the provisions, the Clerk of the Senate is the head of management, he or she has nothing to do with administering the oath of office of/on any senator, hence, the order of the Federal High Court was given to a wrong person.
“Further to these, Chapter 1 Order 7 of the Senate Standing Rules 2015, derived from section 60 of the constitution, obeying such order amounts to violating the constitution as the Clerk of the Senate is not party to the case and such an order of the court cannot be binding on him. You can’t give an order against someone who is not a party to the suit.
“The constitutional provision lies with the Senate President and not the clerk, who without an order of the senate can’t administer an oath of office on a Senator, this has never been done anywhere.
“However, INEC’s decision to issue certificate of return to Isaac Alfa is a misnomer and the implication of the certificate issued to him was in bad faith.
“Conversely, this is not new as senator Albert Bassey, Akwa-Ibom North, is still in the senate representing his constituency in spite of such certificate issued to Bassey Etim Akpan from the same area. Other instances include two members of the House of Representatives from Enugu state are typical incidences of this aberration.
“There is already a Supreme Court decision that says,once there is a stay of order,an application for stay and notice of appeal, no party by decision of the Supreme Court is allowed to take further action,” he said.
A Federal High Court in Abuja had earlier upturned the election of the Senator representing Kogi East, Atai Aidoko Ali and ordered the Clerk to swear in Air Marshal Isaac Alfa (rtd) in his stead.