You can’t re­duce coun­cil chiefs’ ten­ure, court tells Niger

Ade­farasin, Mo Abudu, Davido, others get Glazia per­sons of the year award

The Guardian (Nigeria) - - NEWS - From Akin Alofetekun, Minna

ANew Bussa High Court in Niger State yes­ter­day ruled that the state govern­ment has no right to re­duce the ten­ure of elected lo­cal coun­cil chair­men and coun­cilors from three to two years.

This fol­lowed the suit filed by the So­cial Demo­cratic Party (SDP), 14 po­lit­i­cal par­ties and five coun­cilors over the re­duc­tion of the ten­ure of lo­cal coun­cils in state.

The case was filed against the state govern­ment and the House of Assem­bly.

The court, presided over by Jus­tice Mo­hammed Mo­hammed, ruled that the Assem­bly in par­tic­u­lar lacked the pow­ers to amend the lo­cal govern­ment (Amend­ment) Laws, 2016 of Niger State pub­lished as Niger Le­gal No­tice No1, as it did, which Gov­er­nor Abubakar Sani Bello signed into law.

The SDP and 19 others had ini­ti­ated the suit by way of orig­i­nat­ing sum­mons on Novem­ber 15, 2017 but amended the process pur­suant to an ap­pli­ca­tion dated De­cem­ber 7, 2017, which was filed be­fore the court on De­cem­ber 11 and amended on De­cem­ber 14, 2017.

In a 37-page judg­ment, which lasted al­most three hours, Jus­tice Mo­hammed held that fail­ure of the first de­fen­dant to com­ply with the con­sti­tu­tional re­quire­ment of amend­ing the lo­cal govern­ment law 2001 “ren­dered the amended law un­con­sti­tu­tional, in­valid and lacks le­gal sta­tus.”

On whether or not the first de­fen­dant had pow­ers to re­duce the ten­ure of elected lo­cal coun­cil of­fi­cials in the state from three years to two years, Jus­tice Mo­hammed de­clared that he did not think so.

“On the con­trary, it is my hum­ble view that the pow­ers enu­mer­ated in sec­tions 4 and 7 of the con­sti­tu­tion do not in­clude the power to ei­ther ex­tend or re­duce the ten­ure of elected lo­cal coun­cils in Niger State.

“Where a law is in­val­i­dated, it would be as if it had never been and the old law will sub­sist,” he ruled.

He added that in this in­stance where the law was in­val­i­dated, the only re­course on ten­ure would be to the old law.

The Judge de­clared that the sole is­sues for de­ter­mi­na­tion were re­solved in favour of the plain­tiffs and con­se­quently granted all the claims of the plain­tiffs.

“The de­fen­dants, their agents, priv­ies or ser­vants are hereby re­strained from tak­ing any ac­tion or steps what­so­ever pur­suant to or giv­ing ef­fect to any of the pro­vi­sions of the lo­cal govern­ment (Amend­ment) law 2016 of Niger State pub­lished as Niger State Le­gal No­tice NO 1 of 2016,” Jus­tice Mo­hammed stated.

AS parts of ef­forts to recog­nise in­di­vid­ual brands break­ing ground in their var­i­ous re­spec­tive fields, the Glazia Mag­a­zine held its in­au­gu­ral an­nual Glazia Per­sons of the Year sum­mit in Lagos.

It recog­nised top play­ers in var­i­ous in­dus­tries with awards based on their mer­i­to­ri­ous ser­vices and im­pact on the so­ci­ety in the pre­vi­ous year.

Those hon­oured in­clude Se­nior Pas­tor, House on the Rock, Paul Ade­farasin, gospel singer, Mo Abudu and artiste David Adeleke pop­u­larly known as Davido, among others who made the fi­nal list of 20 per­sons out of over 200 nom­i­nees.

Editor-in-chief, of the mag­a­zine, Omawumi Ogbe, said the Glazia Per­sons Of The Year awards was cre­ated to recog­nise in­di­vid­ual brands break­ing grounds in their re­spec­tive fields of en­deav­our.

“These are distin­guished per­son­al­i­ties who over the last 12 months have con­trib­uted sig­nif­i­cantly to the devel­op­ment and progress of their im­me­di­ate and re­mote spheres of in­flu­ence, hav­ing demon­strated ex­cel­lence in the ar­eas of pas­sion, progress, profit and power within the pe­riod un­der re­view,” she added.

Film­maker and mem­ber of the Lagos State House of Assem­bly, Des­mond El­liot in his open­ing re­marks, noted that, “be­yond cel­e­brat­ing the out­stand­ing awardees, to­day is also about in­spi­ra­tion for growth. To­day is about point­ing out the facts that help achieve ex­cep­tion­al­ity and suc­cess.”

Nol­ly­wood ac­tor, Ken­neth Okonkwo who was hon­ored with the Pioneer award in the Spe­cial Recog­ni­tion Cat­e­gory, ex­pressed his plea­sure at the recog­ni­tion and what it por­tends for the in­dus­try; adding that Nol­ly­wood was here to stay.

Lanre Olu­sola, Bukky Shoni­bare, Japheth Omo­juwa, Em­manuela, Aisha Ahmed, Bolanle Austin-peters were also hon­oured.

Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor of the Nige­ria Sov­er­eign In­vest­ment Fund (NSIA), Uche Orji; Chair­man Knight­stone Prop­er­ties, Adeniyi Adams; CEO ACT Foun­da­tion, Osayi Alile; Mu­si­cal duo, DNA and Brand Strate­gist, Charles O’tu­dor, among others, at­tended the event.

Editor-in-chief, Glazia­magazine, Omawumi Ogbe (left); Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer, ACT Foun­da­tion, Osayi Alile and Prin­ci­pal Brand Strate­gist, ADSTRAT Brand Con­sor­tium, Charles O’tu­dor; at the Glazia Per­sons of the Year Sum­mit in Lagos

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