The Federal High Court, Abuja has adjourned indefinitely a suit challenging the composition of the panel of investigation into the Tiv/Jukun crisis in Taraba State.
Justice Ahmed Mohammed adjourned the suit indefinitely on Thursday following an application to that effect by Sebastine Hon (SAN), counsel to the plaintiffs.
Hon informed the court that the plaintiffs had written a letter to the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice John Tsoho, seeking the transfer of the suit to the Jalingo Division of the court
He prayed the court to adjourn the case indefinitely to await the decision of the Chief Judge on the request for the transfer of the matter to Jalingo.
All the defendants in the suit acknowledged receipt of the letter by the plaintiff and did not oppose the application for the indefinite adjournment.
Ruling on the application, Justice Mohammed said: “In view of the fact that none of the defendants opposed the application for indefinite adjournment, it is my humble view that the court should tarry a while to await the decision of the Chief Judge on the request for the transfer of the case to the Jalingo division of the Federal High Court.
“This case is hereby adjourned sine-die, pending the decision of the Chief Judge.”
The Incorporated Trustees of Mzough U Tiv and five others filed the suit to challenge the constitution of the probe panel into the tribal clashes in Taraba State.
Governor Darius Ishaku of Taraba State, represented by Abdul Ibrahim (SAN), had filed a Notice of Preliminary Objection against the suit.
In his motion, Ishaku challenged the jurisdiction of the court on the grounds that the suit ought to be heard in Taraba State.
Other applicants in the matter are: President General, Mzough U Tiv, Ihiagh Iorbee; David Uchiv; Jacob Gbagede; Julius Kwaghkar; and Yakubu Agbidye.
The applicants, who sued on behalf of themselves and the Tiv people, prayed the court to grant an interim injunction restraining the 4th to 12th respondents (chairman, members, secretary and counsel of the panel) from continuing the probe into the crisis.
They specifically wanted the court to restrain the respondents from taking any further step pursuant to the instrument constituting them as a Commission of Inquiry, pending the determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.
They also prayed the court for an interim injunction restraining the 13th to 19th respondents: Chief of Defence staff, Service Chiefs; Inspector General of Police; Director General, Department of State Services; and Commandant, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, from continuing to aid and abet the forceful removal of the applicants and their tribesmen from their ancestral homes pending the determination of the suit.