The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, on Thursday, declined to sack Cross River Governor, Ben Ayade and his deputy, Ivara Esu over their defection from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC).
The main opposition party, PDP, had in a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/975/2021, prayed the court to sack both Ayade and his deputy, contending that the duo, having abandoned the political party that sponsored their re-election, ought to vacate their respective offices.
The court in his verdict delivered by Justice Taiwo Taiwo, held that the duo could not be sacked from their positions, other than through statutory procedures that were stipulated in sections 180, 188, and 189 of the 1999 Constitution, as amended.
It held that defection to another political party was not stated as one of the grounds for the removal of either a governor or his deputy.
“The 3rd and 4th Defendant cannot be removed except by Constitutional provision.
“This court has no power to declare vacant the seat of the 3rd and 4th Defendants”, the court held.
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