COURT DISMISSES SUIT SEEKING TO STOP THE REINSTATEMENT OF SALAMI
A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, yesterday dismissed a suit seeking to stop President Goodluck Jonathan from reinstating the suspended President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Isa Ayo Salami, to office.
Justice Abdul Kafarati, who dismissed the suit, as grossly lacking in merit, maintained that the plaintiff, one Mr Noah Ajare, lacked the locus-standi to institute the action, saying he failed to establish the personal injury he would suffer if Salami is reinstated.
The Justice Kafarati led court also held that the plaintiff rendered his suit incompetent by joining the Judicial Reform Committee that ab-initio recommended Salami’s recall, as a party to the suit, stressing that the 2nd defendant, not being a creation of the law, could not be dragged to court.
He said: “The fact that the plaintiff is a member of the NBA is not enough to confer locus on him. He has failed to show a special legal right or prove to this court that he has greater interest in the matter, over and above every other Nigerian.”
“Moreover, the issue of removal or reinstatement of Salami as President of the Court of Appeal can be effectively decided without the appearance of the plaintiff. Having gone through the processes before this court, it appears to me that the plaintiff does not have any work to do. The plaintiff cannot be said to have established any cause of action against the defendants, the case lacks merit and it is accordingly dismissed.”
It would be recalled that Mr Noah Ajare had approached the High Court barely 24-hours after the National Judicial Council, NJC, recommended the reinstatement of Justice Salami who it ousted from office on August 18, 2011, urging it to invoke its powers and abort any move by President Jonathan to accede to the NJC request.
Mr Ajare specifically asked the court to declare that all the meetings, discussions and recommendations for the reinstatement of Salami by the President, on the recommendations of the NJC, was illegal, unconstitutional, null and void, as the matter is subjudice and to further grant an order of perpetual injunction restraining the defendants, their servants, agents or privies from implementing, discussing and or rectifying the recommendations of the NJC in respect of Justice Salami pending the hearing and determination of pending court actions so as not to create a wrong precedent.
Listed as defendants in the suit were the NJC and the Judicial Reform Committee constituted by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Dahiru Musdapher with the mandate of resolving the crisis that trailed the suspension of Justice Salami.