There is now high hope among the members of the opposition party in Katsina state – the People Democratic Party (PDP) that their hitherto sacked Local Government Chairmen and Councillors across the 34 local governments may be reinstall by court.
This high hope is triggered by a Court of Appeal in Jos where by on Wednesday last week it threw out an appeal filed by Gov. Simon Lalong of Plateau, against 271 elected councillors he sacked in July 2015.
The sacked councillors, through their counsel, Mr Gyang Zi, had sued Lalong, the Plateau Attorney General and the State House of Assembly, over their removal from office.
The officials, whose three-year tenure was truncated in its first year, described their removal as “illegal and unconstitutional’’.
Collectively, they filed a case against the trio before Justice David Mann of State High Court III, in Jos.
But the governor challenged the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the matter and its decision to take the preliminary objection along with the substantive case.
Lalong failed in that suit and quickly appealed against the ruling.
The governor, through his counsel, Mr Victor Paul, prayed the appellate court to set aside the decision of the lower court.
He also sought an order that the preliminary objection of his clients should be heard first, before the substantive suit.
But the appellate court, presided by Justices A.G. Mshelia (lead Judge), A.H. Abiru and E.O. Williams, rejected Lalong’s objection to the decision of the lower court.
It could be recalled that Governor Masari dissolved all the 34 chairmen in the state elected on the platform of PDP over allegations of financial mismanagement and public fund embezzlement in the build-up to the 2015 general election.
This allegation since denied by the PDP and also filled a case against the Governor over what they termed ‘illegal dissolution’ of duly elected office holders.