Again, Court refuses to stop impeachment move against Edo Deputy Gov, Philip Shaibu

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By Kenneth Atavti

For the second time, a Federal High Court in Abuja has refused to stop the alleged impeachment move against the incumbent Edo State Deputy Governor, Mr Phillip Shaibu by the State House of Assembly.

At Wednesday’s proceedings, his request for an order of status quo to be maintained by the House of Assembly and others involved in the impeachment saga was turned down by Justice James Kolawole Omotoso.

Shaibu through his lawyer, Professor Olawoyin Awoyale, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) had orally requested for an order of status quo to be maintained by parties pending the hearing and determination of his motion on notice.

The senior lawyer, while attempting to convince the court to issue the order cited an authority to back up the application.

In reaction, Justice Omotoso held that the cited authority was not applicable in the Shaibu’s case because the Governor of Edo State and the Edo State House of Assembly who are the principal actors in the impeachment bid have not been served with the originating summons of the suit as required by law.

However, the Judge granted the request that the Edo State Governor and the State House of Assembly be served with the originating summons by substituted means.

Specifically, Justice Omotoso ordered that the court process be pasted at the entrance gate of the Edo State Government House and the gate of the State House of Assembly Complex both in Benin.

Besides, the Judge also directed that all court papers be served on parties in the matter with the use of a registered Courier Company.

Justice Omotoso subsequently fixed April 15 for hearing of the case.

The Deputy Governor, Phillip Shaibu who was in the room throughout Wednesday’s proceedings declined to speak with newsmen.