MAJOR parties in the recall process of Senator Dino Melaye, representing Kogi West, gave different interpretations to the Federal High Court ruling on Monday, on a fresh recall time table.
While lawyer to Senator Dino Melaye, Mr Mike Ozekhome argued that the court ruling meant a restart of recall process counting down to 90 days, National Commissioner, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mr Adedeji Soyebi, said the judgment meant a continuation of process, with 74 days left before it was stalled.
Both Ozekhome and Soyebi advanced these varied positions while featuring on a Channels Television programme, on Monday evening.
Speaking, Ozekhome argued that the judge ruled that the recall was deemed frozen hence INEC was expected to re-issue a new time table.
Ozekhome however expressed gladness that the court granted its prayer that INEC should give his client, Melaye a copy of the petition, for him to ascertain the genuineness of those asking for his recall.
“The recall was deemed to have been frozen and that INEC will now re-issue a new time table
The only aspect we are appealing on is probably the aspect that there was no constitutional requirement as the adjudicator to give a fair hearing to the person being recalled.
“The court agreed with us on the fact that Dino Melaye was never given a copy of the petition. The constituents that Melaye asked said that they did not append their signature to the petition while others said that what they signed was a document where they were promised fertilizers. So, Dino ought to be given a copy of the petition to sight whether the signatories are genuine or not.”
“If INEC gives a copy of petition and finds out fictitious names, like some not from Kogi West, Dino Melaye has the right under Section 6 of the constitution to vent his greviances,” Ozekhome said.
On the other hand, Soyebi said INEC’s understanding of the judgement was that it to carry out the recall process, from when it was stalled on July 6, 2017, which was 16 days after it commenced.
In line with the judgment, he assured that INEC would give Melaye a copy of the petition within the next two weeks, while the new time table would be issued soon.
“As far as we are concerned we have 74 days for the lifespan of the recall. We are told to start from when it was stalled on July 6, not start all over. We will release the timetable very soon. Something concrete will dome up this week.”
“In line with the principle of fair play, fairness and transparency, we will abide by every letter of the judgment. The court asked us to give Melaye a copy of the petition within a period of two weeks, for him to study the petition, we will comply by this. We will take all these into consideration before we come up with a new time table,” Soyebi said.
Source: Nigerian Tribune