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Court orders Ambode’s probe over purchase of 820 buses

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An Ikeja High Court in Lagos State on Thursday struck out a suit filed by former Lagos State Governor Akinwunmi Ambode to stop the House of Assembly from probing the 820 buses he bought for public transportation.

Justice Yetunde Adesanya held that Ambode had a case to answer in relation to the procurement of the buses.

She held that the suit filed by the former governor “is incompetent.”

Justice Adesanya said: “The court will not stop the Lagos House of Assembly (Ad-hoc Committee) from carrying out its constitutional function of oversight. The suit is hereby struck out.

“The claimant (Ambode) has not been indicted. An invitation by an agency of the government cannot in anyway cause a breach of the threat of the fundamental rights of the claimant.

“I hereby find that the claimant’s action is an invitation to the court to cripple the legislative exercise of the statutory power of the Lagos State House of Assembly under sections 128 and 129 of the 1999 Constitution.

“That is not the function of the court and no court of law should accede to such invitation. The claimant’s suit is hereby struck out.”

Ambode sued the House of Assembly for its decision to probe his purchase of 820 buses during his administration.

The House, however, suspended the probe following an order of the court, which directed parties to maintain status quo.

The defendants in the suit are the Speaker, Mudashiru Obasa; House Clerk, Mr. A.A Sanni; Chairman of the Ad hoc Committee set up by the House to probe the procurement, Fatai Mojeed and members of the committee, which include Gbolahan Yishawu, A. A.  Yusuff, Yinka Ogundimu, Mojisola Lasbat Meranda, M. L. Makinde, Kehinde Joseph, T. A. Adewale and O. S. Afinni.

Ambode was represented by his counsel, Mr. Tayo Oyetibo (SAN), while Mr. Olukayode Enitan (SAN) represented the lawmakers.

In his statement of claim before the court, Ambode had claimed that contrary to “deliberate misrepresentation of facts by the lawmakers, the procurement of the 820 buses was well captured in the 2018 Appropriation Law, which was duly approved by the House.”

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