Court hears suit against ex-military heads of state June 15


A Federal High Court sitting in Awka, Anambra State, will on June 15, 2022, commence hearing on the suit challenging the eligibility of former military Heads of State as members of the Council of State.

An Anambra State-based constitutional lawyer, Dr Nwafili Okwuosa, in a suit number FHC/AWKCS/27/ 2021, prayed the high court to stop General Yakubu Gowon, General Olusegun Obasanjo, General Abdusalami Abubakar, and Chief Ernest Shonekan from participating, parading and collecting emoluments as members of the Council of State.

Joined in the suit are the Attorney-General of the Federation and Accountant-General of the Federation.

According to him, the 1999 Constitution, as amended, did not recognise the takeover of government in Nigeria by any means not provided for in the said constitution.

He argued that by virtue of the provision of Section 1(2) of the 1999 Constitution, it is inconsistent for any person to ascend to power through means not provided.

Okwuosa stated that according to the Constitution, the former military Heads of State are not entitled to lifelong pension, emoluments, allowance, perks or whatsoever under the prevailing order.

He also prayed the court to order them to refund all they have collected as members of the Council of State.

Okwuosa also prayed the court to order them to apologise to Nigerians for foisting themselves on the country. He further prayed the court to stop the Attorney General of the Federation from inviting them to the Council of State meeting.

When the case was called for hearing, none of the defendants was present.

Reacting, Okwuosa lamented that despite properly serving the defendants, none of them deemed it fit to respond, apart from the Accountant General of the Federation represented in the court.

In the absence of anybody representing the Attorney General of the Federation, Arunchi Worlu, who represented the Attorney-General for a different case, was asked to take over.

She said she was not briefed but would report back to the office for appropriate action.

After hearing the prayers, the presiding judge, Justice Nnamdi Dimgba, adjourned the case to June 15, 2022, for hearing and ordered the plaintiff to serve the defendants with pre-notice information.