The National Industrial Court of Nigeria sitting in Ibadan, Oyo State has stopped the Nigeria Union of Journalists from conducting fresh election into the Ogun State Council of the union.
The court restrained the NUJ President, Comrade Chris Isiguzo; the NUJ National Secretary, Comrade Shuaib Leman; and 12 other defendants from holding any election in the state council pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice.
The Presiding Judge, Justice J. D. Peters, granted the order on Wednesday in an ex parte application brought before him in suit number NICN/IB/85/2019.
The suit was filed by the Ogun NUJ Chairman, Soji Amosu, and three other claimants, challenging the purported decision of the union’s national leadership to conduct fresh election into the offices occupied by the claimants.
The national leadership had constituted a five-member electoral committee, with Lanre Ogunyinka and Tunde Olayiwola appointed as chairman and secretary respectively to hold election on Saturday.
But ruling on the application brought by counsel to the applicants, Deji Enisenyin, the presiding judge ordered the respondents to refrain from conducting any election in the Ogun State Council of the NUJ.
He declared that the applicants have the right for which the intervention of the court was necessary and sought to be protected from infringement by the respondents.
The judge held that the claimants, who were elected on March 29, 2019, should not be interfered with by Isiguzo, Leman, Central Working Committee and National Executive Council of the NUJ, which were joined as first, second, third and fourth respondents respectively.
Justice Peters held: “This is an ex parte application brought pursuant to Order 22 Rules 1 and 2 of the Rules of this Court.
“I have read the processes filed by the learned counsel, including the affidavit in support, the accompanying exhibits and the written address.
“Having done so, I find that the applicants have right for which the intervention of this court is necessary and sought to be protected from infringement by the respondents.
“I find merit in this application and granted same as sought.
“For the avoidance of doubt, an order of interim injunction is here issued restraining the 1st – 4th and 10th – 14th respondents, their privies, servants, agents and whosoever named from conducting any election in to the offices of Chairman, Vice Chairman, Secretary and Assistant Secretary of the NUJ Ogun State Council which is currently held by the 1st – 4th applicants following the election held on 29/4/19 pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice.
“An order of interim injunction is here issued restraining the 1st – 4th respondents, their privies, servants or agents from interfering with the offices of the 1st – 4th applicants following the election held on 29/3/19 pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice.
“It is further ordered that the respondents, their privies, servants or agents shall not take any step that may adversely be an affront to the orders here made by this court today.”
The judge directed that the order be served on the respondents forthwith.
He, thereafter, adjourned the case to December 4, 2019 to hear the Motion on Notice.