Senator Ovie Omo-Agege’s suspension by the Nigerian Senate has been declared ‘‘unconstitutional’’ by a Federal High Courtsitting in Abuja.
Omo-Agege, who is the federal lawmaker representing Delta Central in the Senate, was recently suspended for 90 legislative days by the upper chamber of the National Assembly, for speaking against the Senate’s bid to re-order the sequence of the 2019 general elections.
The Senator had claimed that the Red Chamber’s bid to reorder the 2019 election sequence was targeted at President Muhammadu Buhari’s re-election.
In his ruling today, Justice Nnamdi Dimgba nullified Senate’s suspension of the lawmaker, saying the basis for the suspension was illegal.
Although Justice Dimgba held that the Red Chamber had the power to discipline its erring members, he however ruled that Omo-Agege’s suspension violated the constitution.
The presiding judge said, “Access to court is a fundamental right in the Constitution which cannot be taken away by force or intimidation from any organ.”
Justice Dimgba equally ruled that it was a breach of the principle of natural justice for the Senate to allow Senator Dino Melaye to partake in the Ethics and Privileges Committee that recommended Omo-Agege’s suspension because the Mr Melaye was a complainant in the suit.