A Kano State High Court on Monday ordered the State Assembly to stop the ongoing investigation into the bribery allegation against Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje.
The court presided over by Justice A. T Badamasi, also ordered the seven-man investigative committee set up by the assembly to maintain the status quo ante.
A group of constitutional lawyers, “Lawyers for the Sustainable Democracy of Nigeria”, had dragged Kano State House of Assembly to court and sought for an order to stop its committee from further investigation into the matter.
The National President of the group, Barrister Muhammad Zubair, who read the court order to newsmen today, said the investigation contradicted the law that separates powers among the three tiers of governments on how to operate.
He said the case was criminal, hence only a competent court of law could entertain it.
“Though the house relied on Sections 128-129 of the Assembly in conducting its investigation, however, the assembly can only do so if there is any petition to that effect from someone,” he said.
The order of interim injunction reads, “Upon carefully running through the ex-parte application dated the 5th day of November 2018 filed by the Counsel for the plaintiff accompanied by a 23-paragraph affidavit duly deposed by Muhammad Zubair, the Court granted the order”.
The court said the respondents, Kano Assembly, Chairman of the Committee Baffa Babba Danagundi and the Attorney General should be served before closing hours of Monday, November 5, 2018.
“And that accelerated hearing is hereby ordered and the respondents are given 4 days to respond to this application after serving,” it said.
The court also ordered that parties should maintain status quo ante pending the hearing of the motion on notice, and adjourned the case to November 12, 2018, for hearing.
When contacted, the chairman of the Kano Assembly seven-man Committee, Hon. Baffa Babba Danagundi said the committee had not been served with the order, hence nothing could stop them from discharging their responsibility.
He, however, said when they were served, they would respect the rule of law as lawmakers.
“We have promised to do justice to the case and we will do justice to whoever deserves it. So, if we are served, we will abide by the court order and we will wait to see the outcome of the court judgement but I can assure you, we will follow this case to its logical conclusion,” he said.