A Federal High Court in Abuja has dismissed the suit brought before it by Senator Dino Melaye seeking to stop the process of his recall by his constituents.
Melaye, the senator representing Kogi West District, had filed a suit challenging the process the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was taking for his recall.
He had said the signatories to the petition for the recall included those of people who are deceased.
The judge, Justice Nnamdi Dimgba, however, has said INEC “shall proceed with the recall process.”
Justice Dimgba said Melaye’s suit was “hasty, premature and presumptuous.”
He said INEC had already scheduled the exercise for the verification of the authenticity of the signatures, and until after that will it be reasonable for Melaye to go to court.
He said: “He must first go into the verification exercise and only when he does not get justice that he can come to court.”
Justice Dimgba also dismissed Melaye’s claim that the number of signatures did not meet the figure stipulated in the Constitution.
He said the number of signatures needed to begin the senator’s recall process – 188,588 out of the 360,100 registered voters in the district – had been met.
The Judge, however, did order the INRC to submit an amended recall timetable to the senator for a minimum of two weeks before its start to enable the senator defend himself against the process.
He said that although this wasn’t expressly required by the constitution, it would be in the spirit of fair hearing to do so.