The Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, who is lead counsel to Mr Benjamin Adanyi, plaintiff in the suit challenging the validity of the Benue State First Class Chieftaincy Law, Professor Tony Ijohor, today prayed the Makurdi High Court to jail state Attorney General and Justice Commissioner, Dr Phillip Ierkwagh, and Special Adviser, Bureau for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Mr Solomon Wombo, for contempt of court.
Prof. Ijohor stated that inspite of the court injunction restraining the Governor and seven others including the officials they had gone ahead and appointed the first class chiefs.
The legal counsel argued that the respondents who had been duly served treated the court order with disdain adding that it was a sad day for the judiciary for the chief law officer of the state to disregard a court order.
Mr Adanyi, the Minority leader of the Benue State House of Assembly, had sought and obtained the interim injunction on 4th May, 2015.
According to him while the Och’Idoma complied with the order the Tor Tiv with the collaboration of the officials went ahead and appointed six first class chiefs.
Chief Edward Ashiekaa who appeared as lead counsel for the defendants requested an adjournment to enable him consult with and receive adequate briefs from his clients on the matter which he said was sensitive.
He stated that he was in Abuja when what he described as the drama transpired saying if he had been around he might have used his influence to bear on what happened but maintained that he was not in a position to change it.
The Presiding Judge, Mr Justice Iorhemen Hwande fixed Friday, 15th May, 2015 for hearing of the motion as well as another one seeking interlocutory injunction and transferred the case to High Court Four.
Mr Justice Hwande who is the state Chief Judge explained that since his court had given the order another court should sit on the contempt and other motion.