Law News
11 Reps sue Dogara over mace-snatching ban

Eleven members of the House of Representatives have approached an Abuja Federal High Court seeking to quash new amendments to the Standing Orders of the House.

Specifically, the members, all of the All Progressives Congress, seek to stop the Speaker, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, and the Clerk, Mr. Mohammed Sani-Omolori, from applying the new rules in the proceedings of the House.

The lawmakers are particularly opposing a new provision placing a ban on the snatching of the mace, the symbol of legislative authority, by any member for whatever reasons.

Under the new provisions passed by the House on October 8, 2015, a member approaching the mace under whatever guise can earn themselves a suspension from legislative activities for six months or for as long as may be determined by the Speaker.

A member can also be suspended for up to 30 days for disobeying a presiding officer, especially when asked to resume their seat, but they choose to continue to be disorderly.

However, in the suit, which was filed on December 14, the members opposed the amendments.

The 11 are led by Mr. Ali Madaki, a known anti-Dogara lawmaker from Kano State.

Represented by their lawyer, Mr. Ahmed Mahmud, the lawmakers want the court to “declare the new Standing Orders as null and void as well as unconstitutional, as it contravenes the constitution.”

The other members are Mohammed Musa-Soba (APC, Kaduna); Yusuf Bala-Ikara (APC, Kaduna); Abubakar Lado-Suleja (APC, Niger); Lawal Yahaya-Gumau (APC, Bauchi); Rotimi Agunsoye (APC, Lagos); Aminu Ibrahim-Malle (APC, Taraba); Sunday Adepoju (APC, Oyo); Ahmed Babba-Kaita (APC, Katsina); Philip Shuaibu (APC, Edo); and Abubakar Chika-Adamu (APC, Niger).

When contacted for comments, the Chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Mr. Abdulrazak Namdas, said it would be unwise to speak on a matter before a law court.

He noted, “Although, I have not seen the court papers, since the matter is in court, it will amount to contempt of court for me to say anything.

“All I can say is that the court should be allowed to do its work and determine the matter.”

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