A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Friday ordered Kawu Baraje, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, and Sam Jaja to stop parading themselves as national officers of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
The presiding judge, Justice Evoh Chukwu gave the order while delivering judgement in a suit filed by the national chairman of the party, Bamanga Tukur and 12 others on September 6.
Justice Chukwu also restrained the respondents from operating secretariats of the New PDP at the national, state or local levels and from interfering with the duties of the “Bamanga Tukur-led leadership of the party”.
It would be recalled that prior to the judgement, the defendants, hitherto declared themselves as executive officers of a splinter group of the party popularly referred to as the New PDP.
The court further ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, not to cancel the result of the special convention of the party organised on August 31 at the Eagles Square in Abuja.
Earlier, the judge dismissed all the respondents’ preliminary objections raised against the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the suit as well as allegations that the plaintiffs abused court process by instituting the suit.
Reacting to the ruling, the national publicity secretary of the party, Olisa Metuh, said the jugement is ”absolutely clear, direct and unambiguous”.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the ruling of the court in this regard is absolutely clear, direct and unambiguous. The PDP has only one duly elected National Executive Committee (NEC) under the national chairmanship of Tukur,” he said in a statement.
He added that the leadership of the PDP would no longer tolerate or condone any meeting, utterances, press statements and activities by the faction.
“Our leaders chose the path of caution and decorum, but our reconciliatory moves and offer of olive branch are treated with the highest disdain and viewed as signs of weakness. The NWC has, therefore, directed that the name, colour, flag and the provisions of constitution of our party must be held sacrosanct by our members,” he said.
The party spokesman thanked all members who had kept faith and remained loyal to the party`s constitution through its trying time.