Absence of judge stalls NUJ impeachment suit

Posted by Garba Ahmed, Kaduna | 21 June 2017 | 1,117 times

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•Impeached Kaduna NUJ Chairman Garba Muhammad.

The absence of the judge has stalled a suit over the alleged illegal impeachment of Garba Muhammad, Kaduna Council Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), lodged against the Union brought before Justice Lawal Mani of the National Industrial Court, Kano, on Tuesday.

“The court didn’t seat because the judge was not in court due to official engagement outside Kano and has sent his apology,” court officials told journalists.

The court had earlier adjourned the case for yesterday to enable both parties to report their Pre-Trial Conference.

The court however gave July 19, 2017 as a new date for the report on the Pre-Trial Conference and hearing of the case.

The embattled Chairman had dragged the union to court over alleged illegal impeachment in September 2016 while he was on holy pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia.

“Such illegal actions will be challenged in a competent court of jurisdictions, with a view to seeking justice and bringing sanity in our great union that has been hijacked by very few selfish individuals,” he said.

News Express reports that allegations levelled against the embattled chairman include travelling without proper handing over to the vice chairman, removal of council file cheque book and his official car to his house as well as refusal to approve funds for delegation to a national unity conference in Abeokuta.

Garba Muhammad, however, argued that there has not been any investigation or a white paper indicting him of the unfounded allegations. “Yet the desperate factional members of the State Working Committee in connivance with the national leadership still went ahead to constitute an illegal electoral committee without ratification of State Executive Council and the State Congress to declare one Adamu Yusuf as new chairman,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Caretaker Committee of the Council has expressed dismay over what they described as the ‘purported bye-election’.

Secretary of the Committee Bello Hamza, in a press statement, while condemning the action said the bye election is illegal null and avoid and cannot be recognised.

His words: “Conducting a bye-election under the SWC that has been ousted through vote of no confidence by n congress in December, 2016, is a violation of the constitutional provision of the NUJ.

“The emergency congress dissolved all the SWC through vote of no confidence after failing to call for a meeting for over three months.

“The congress appointed Austine Ayembe of NTA as Caretaker Chairman and Bello Hamza of Almizan as Secretary to oversee the affairs of the union and organise fresh election into all seven offices of the SWC.”

He called on members to remain calm and as the committee make effort to resolve the crisis.

Source: News Express

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