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Politics

I Remain Chairman of Langtang North LGA Despite Court Ruling – Barr Zulfa

The controversy surrounding the chairmanship of Langtang North Local Government Council of Plateau State has continued as Barr. Bitrus Zulfa of the ruling All Progressives Congress on Monday said neither himself nor the Council was a party to the suit and judgment obtained by Hon. Joshua Ubandoma Laven of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party.

He also said such judgment cannot be enforced against people who are not parties to the suit.

NAIJATABLOID recalls that Barr. Zulfa, the immediate past Commissioner for Housing in the State, was the candidate of the ruling APC in the October 9th, 2021 LGC elections that took place in the State, and was returned winner.

Zulfa disclosed this while briefing journalists in Jos, the State Capital.

He said, “I must state in unambiguous terms that neither myself nor Langtang North Local Government Area is a party to the suit and the judgment obtained by Ubandoma.

“I am very much aware that Ubandoma does not know, but I will take the pain to explain to him in a language he can understand that judgments cannot be executed against non-parties.

According to him, “The Law in this regard has not changed, that judgment cannot be enforced against persons who are not parties to the suit.

“Had Ubandoma wanted to execute his judgment against me or Langtang North Local Government Area, he would have sued me and Langtang North Local Government Area as parties to his suit. But, he didn’t. To my mind, this is an elementary principle of common sense that needs no interpretation by any lawyer,” he maintained.

“The judgment obtained by Ubandoma has already been appealed against and the Notice and Grounds of Appeal adequately served on Ubandoma”, he explained.

“Upon obtaining a judgment from the court, it is not for the party who has obtained judgment to enforce same (as did Ubandoma), it is for the court Sheriffs, in company of Law Enforcement Agents to enforce same against persons who are party to the said judgment. The resort to self-help by Ubandoma and his supporters by destroying part of the main gate leading to Langtang North Local Government Area is an act of criminality; and if Ubandoma is being prosecuted for it, then he should deal with it.

He further stated that “Ubandoma has levelled so many false accusations against the government of the day. I must quickly educate him on this too, or else, posterity will not forgive me.

“The judiciary is an independent arm of government governed by its rules and regulations. Once a party approaches the Court for a remedy, he must be patient enough to allow the processes and procedures of such to take its full course.

“Government of the day has nothing to do with what Ubandoma is accusing it of. Government is equally patiently allowing the legal process to take its full course, having been sued by Ubandoma. The accusations levelled against Government of the day is just Ubandoma’s way of exhibiting ignorance of the legal process”, he further explained.

Zulfa added that, “It is imperative to state at this juncture that unless and until there is a judgment against me or Langtang North Local Government Area, the judgment obtained by Ubandoma has nothing to do with me or my office as the Executive Chairman of Langtang North Local Government Area.

“The judgment obtained by Ubandoma is against PLASIEC, Attorney General of Plateau State, Governor of Plateau State and Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs.

“Consequently, my position as Executive Chairman of Langtang North Local Government Area is not affected in any way,” he stressed.

Recall that Laven contested on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) against the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Amos Nanloh for the chairmanship seat of Langtang North local government in 2018 and the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC) declared Nanloh elected and he was sworn in.

However, Laven went to court where the election was ruled in his favour and he was sworn in as duly elected chairman on October 9, 2019, for the period of three years.

But after spending two years in office, PLASIEC declared his seat vacant by an advertisement in the media which led Laven to approach the Court.

Delivering his judgment last Tuesday, Justice Ishaku Kunda of the State High Court, asked Laven to resume office immediately without delay to complete his three-year tenure which terminates on 9th October 2022 as he took an oath of office on the 9th of October, 2019.

Kunda described the whole scenario where Laven was stopped from completing his tenure as an act of “impunity, illegality and executive rascality which must end forthwith”.

The Judge said, “Laven’s tenure cannot be arbitrarily aborted before his tenure elapses.

“The election held thereof (9th October, 2021) was a nullity. Laven shall go back to the local government to complete his tenure as the Executive Chairman of the council. I hold and warn that the defendant (PLASIEC) should not disobey this judgement.” DailyPost

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