FCTA APPOINTMENTS: COURT TO HEAR SUIT AGAINST FG FEB. 2
The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja will on February 2, 2022 hear the suit brought by fiery human rights activist, Mr. Maxwell Opara challenging the appointment of mandate secretaries for the Fdereal Capital Territory (FCT).
In a statement made available to CITY LAWYER, Opara said: “Gentlemen of the Press, just to inform you that FEDERAL HIGH COURT 6 PRESIDED BY HON. I. E EKWO has slated 2nd February, 2022 to hear a matter filed by me Barr. Maxwell Opara challenging the lopsided appointment of FCT MANDATE SECRETARIES by Hon. Minister of FCT with the approval of the President.”
It is recalled that Opara had dragged President Muhammadu Buhari and the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mallam Mohammed Bello before the Federal High Court over an alleged violation of the Federal Character Act in the appointment of Permanent Secretaries, Executive Secretaries, Personal Aides, Directors and other staff of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA).
The suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1523/2021 has the FCT Minister, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Attorney General of the Federation and the Federal Character Commission as defendants.
The plaintiff is seeking an order of the court directing the FCT Minister and other defendants to comply with the provisions of Sections 4(1)(a)(b) and 5 of the Federal Character (Establishment) Act in appointments in all cadres of posts in FCTA.
Opara, who formulated three issues for the determination of the court, also wants the court to declare that the Federal Character Commission (FCC) is empowered by law to formulate principles and guidelines for the application of the federal character principle of fairness and equitable distribution of all cadre of posts in the federal government of Nigeria and to ensure compliance to the said formula.
He also prayed the court to declare that the 1st to 3rd defendants are under obligation to comply with the provisions of Part 1, Section 1 to 9 and Part III, Section 4 and 5 of the guiding principle and formulae for distribution of all cadre of posts and in appointments into all cadre of posts into the Federal Capital Administration.
He prays for “A declaration that the recent appointment on. 23 of November, 2021 of Perm-Secs, executive secretaries and other staffers if FCTA by 1st to 3rd defendants clearly offends sections 4(1)(a)(b) and 5 of the Federal Character Commission (Establishment, etc) and provisions of Part 1, sections 1 to 9 and Part III, section 4 and 5 of the guiding principle and formulae for distribution of all cadre of posts made pursuant to section 4(1)(a) of the Federal Character Commission (Establishment, Etc) Act and accordingly the said appointments are void”.
In a 20-paragraph affidavit deposed by the plaintiff, he said recently, the FCT Minister in conjunction with other defendants appointed political, ministerial and other staff of FCTA against the Federal Character principle.
According to REFLECTION, Opara alleged that the appointments as done by the FCT Minister favoured people who are mostly from the northern part of the country.
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