Court stops BBA election over crisis

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By Mary BASSEY Senior Investigator Correspondent Làgos/

A Federal High Court sitting before Justice (Prof) Obiozor in Lagos has restrained an electoral panel from conducting elections into various offices of the Balogun Business Association BBA internationally market Làgos over alleged lingering crisis till further notice. The order of perpetual injunction restraining the electoral panel allegedly constituted illegally in contravention of the in-house constitution, followed spirited and counter prayers from counsel to the association, Mr. Martin Okpaleke in a suit filed by the life Trustee of the association chief Nicholas Okeke to that effect. Mr.Osita Mbamalu, counsel to the interested party including chairman of the alleged illegally constituted electoral panel Mr. Ifeanyi Okuma who wanted the election to take place had vehemently opposed the order on the ground that the electora panel was constituted in good faith and accordance with extant provisions of the constitution of the association. But counteringMr. Mbamalu’s submissions, Mr. Martin Okpaleke contended that going ahead with the election with an illegally constituted panel would spell the doom for the association. He therefore, prayed that the court grants the order.

Granting the order, Justice Obiozor admonished the parties in dispute to maintain status quo and therefore, adjourned till January 18, 2021. The learned justice however, warned that everything done or needed to be done by the Association and its incumbent management led by the President of the Association, Chief Tony Orbih, who is also the incumbent Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Association must be in tandem with the provisions of the Constitution of the Association.

Recall that the tenure of the incumbent management of the Association would be expiring by the 12th or 15th of December, 2020. In an attempt to seize control of the Association, a former President of the Association precipitated a crisis in the Association over the Chairmanship of the Board of Trustees claiming to be the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Association notwithstanding that by the Constitution of the Association, only an incumbent President of the Association can be Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Association.

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