A suit seeking to set aside the suspension of Iyorchia Ayu as a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and reinstate him as the National Chairman of the opposition party has been dismissed by a Benue State High Court in Gboko, presided over by Justice D.M. Igyuse.
The suit was filed by one Nongo Ordue on behalf of the 17 member executives of Dr. Ayu’s Igyorov Council Ward of Gboko Local Government Area of the state.
The counsel to the PDP, Clement Mue in his reply to the suit said that the judgment of a Makurdi High Court in Utaan against Ayu, which was marked MHC/85/2023 had sufficiently addressed the issues raised in the claim of the plaintiffs.
Mue argued that the suit was therefore caught up by a bar known in legal parlance as ‘estoppel.’
He informed the court that “Senator Ayu had since filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal against the decision of the court.”
He argued that “hearing and determining the suit would amount to sitting on an appeal against the earlier decision of a court of coordinate jurisdiction.”
The PDP counsel urged the court to hold that the suit before it amounted to “an abuse of court process.”
In his judgment, Justice Igyuse pointed out that the plaintiffs had filed a similar claim in suit No. GHC/36/2023 between themselves as plaintiffs, including Ayu who was the 18th plaintiff and the said suit, was struck out by High Court 3, Gboko on June 27, 2023, on the application of J.T. Injua who told the court that the said claim had been filed by the present plaintiffs’ counsel, Nongo Ordue.
Justice Igyuse agreed with the submission of Mue and accordingly dismissed the suit, describing it as “the worst form of abuse of court process.”