One of the contenders in the botched election of the correspondents’ chapel of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), FCT Council, Comrade Yemi Itodo, has approached the Maitama High Court, Abuja, seeking an order of the court for immediate inauguration as the substantive chairman of the chapel.
A source within the FCT Council of NUJ confirmed to our reporter that the court bailiff served the council secretariat at Utako Abuja on Thursday.
The FCT Council of the union, had, on Saturday 20th October 2018, conducted elections into various offices of the correspondents’ chapel, wherein, Yemi Itodo earlier declared a winner before the council cancelled the election over alleged irregularities.
Acting chairman of the Council, Mr Primus Khaloba, who announced the nullification, said that some members of the chapel brought a petition against the election.
Irked by the decision of Mr Khaloba and his executives, the newly elected officials of the correspondents’ chapel approached the National Secretariat, where the matter is currently receiving attention.
It was, however, gathered that the FCT Council under the leadership of Comrade Emmanuel Ogbechie, without recourse to the pendency of the petition at the National Secretariat, ordered a fresh election into the correspondents chapel, slated for Saturday, 27th April 2019.
In the originating summon dated 17th April 2019, Yemi Itodo is also seeking “an order restraining the Defendants from conducting another election or recognizing any other Exco apart from the Plaintiffs whom were elected on the 20th October 2018”.
Accompanied by a 17-paragraph affidavit deposed to by Yemi Itodo and a written address, the court was also urged to declare that, “the NUJ FCT Correspondents Chapel election conducted on the 20th October 2018 wherein the Plaintiffs were elected is lawful and in accordance with the NUJ constitution”.
The FCT Council chairman of the union, Ogbechie, the chairman of the Credentials Committee set up by the Council, Mrs Stella Okoh Esene and the committee secretary, Osaretin Osadebamwen Patrick, were also joined in the suit as defendants.
“Whether having regard to the extant constitution of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Article 6(5) to the effect of the 20th October 2018 NUJ FCT Correspondents Chapel election wherein the Plaintiffs were returned, elected, the Defendants have the right and authority to conduct another election of the same union.
“If the answer to question 1 is in the Negative, Whether the act of the Defendants in organizing and attempting to conduct another election for the NUJ FCT Correspondents Chapel is lawful and accordance with the extant NUJ constitution”, the originating summons reads in part.
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