The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, on Friday, declined a suit seeking to declare vacant the seats of Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, former Senate Majority Leader, Godswill Akpabio and 51 other lawmakers for defecting to other parties.
The Plaintiff which is an advocacy group under the aegis of Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) had asked the court to declare their seats vacant after their defection from the different political platforms upon which they were voted in as members of the National Assembly.
The defendants comprises 17 Senators and 37 House of Reps members.
Delivering judgment, Justice Okon Abang held that the plaintiff lacked the locus standi (the legal right) to institute the suit.
The Court held that the plaintiff, not being the Independent National Electoral Commission, the political parties from which the legislators defected to the other ones, a member of any of the political parties, a member of the constituencies of the legislators or registered voters in the lawmakers’ constituencies, it lacked the legal capacity to institute the action.
The judge noted that the plaintiff lack of locus standi to file the action had robbed the court of the jurisdiction to consider the merit of its claims in the suit.
It added that the plaintiff’s failure to join the Peoples Democratic Party, the All Progressives Congress and the Action Democratic Congress which sponsored the elections of the defector legislators, was fatal to the suit.