- Cross River state governor, Ben Ayade has expressed confidence in retaining his position ahead of the court judgement that would determine his fate
- The governor's deputy chief press secretary, Linus Obogo said he believes the court will pass a favourable judgment
- The opposition party had urged the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja to order the removal of Ayade and his deputy over their defection to APC
Benedict Ayade of Cross River state has said he is confident of retaining his position as the governor of the state despite the suit filed by the Peoples Democratic (PDP) questioning the legality of his position as the state governor.
The PDP had filed a case calling for the sack of the governor for moving to another party outside where he emerged victorious at the polls. On Monday, March 21, court sacked 20 lawmakers from the state.
But Ayade is unperturbed over the twists.
Speaking exclusively with Legit.ng, Linus Obogo, the Deputy Chief Press Secretary to the governor said he believes the court will pass a favourable judgment.
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He said the case of Ayade was different from that of Ebonyi. Obogo cited section 40 of the 1999 constitution which he said provides the right for freedom of association including forming or joining any political party of one's choice.
According to him, the constitution did not circumscribe that freedom.
"We believe the court will arrive at a favorable judgement. For instance, the judgement affecting the state lawmakers is a bit different from the Ebonyi case. Unlike in Ebonyi, the court did not order INEC to recognize new PDP nominees as replacements."
So these cases can always be distinguished. He said:
"On the point of law, section 308 of the 1999 constitution as amended gives Governor’s absolute immunity from civil and criminal cases.
"Section 40 of the said constitution also provides the right for freedom of association including forming or joining any political party of choice. The constitution did not circumscribe that freedom
"So if the electoral act is inconsistent in that regard with the constitution, then the act is null and void to the extent of the inconsistencies
"There’s also the issue of jurisdiction. It lies with the court where the cause of matter arose. The cause of matter arose in Calabar and not Abuja."
Umahi's sack: Anxiety as court fixes date for Governor Ayade's judgement
Legit.ng previously reported that anxiety seems to be building up in Cross River state following the expected judgement by a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.
This anxiety Legit.ng gathered is because the court has fixed Friday, March 25, for final judgement in a suit filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) against the Cross River state governor.
The opposition party in its suit had asked the court to order the removal of Ayade and his deputy from office over their defection to the APC.