Court Opens Contempt Proceedings Against Jega

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A Federal High Court sitting in Warri, Delta State, has, therefore, fixed February 10, to commence contempt of court proceedings against the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Attahiru Jega, after he was charged with refusal to execute a court judgment.

The court had, on October 31, 2014, delivered a judgment, ordering INEC to restore forthwith, Ughelli South 1 and Isoko North 1 constituencies, which were, in 1998, kept from public knowledge by the electoral umpire. INEC, however, filed for a stay of execution against the judgment in the same court.

While dismissing the application on February 3, the presiding judge, Justice Shittu Abubakar, contended that INEC had crossed its bounds by deliberately delaying the implementation of the ruling of the court.

Counsel for the plaintiffs, Chief Efe Akpofure, described the quashing of INEC’s application for stay of execution as a good judgment.

According to him, since the ruling had to do with the restoration of state constituencies, in order to participate in the February 28 elections, the case deserved an accelerated implementation.

Counsel for INEC, Efa Oka, however said that INEC was under no obligation to execute the judgment, since the application for stay of execution had been quashed.

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