The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja presided over by Justice John Tsoho on Thursday nullified the suspension of a member representing Kiru/Bebeji Federal Constituency, Abdulmumin Jibrin, from the House of Representatives for 180 legislative days.
On March 13, the House recalled Mr Jibrin, who was suspended on September 28, 2016, for 180 legislative days
But the court in its over 40-page judgement declared that the suspension of Mr Jibrin as null and void, and has no effect whatsoever.
The court also said the suspention was an affront and a clear violation of his fundamental human right.
Mr Tsoho added that the House does not have the powers to suspend Mr Jibrin or any other member even for one day in line with the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended.
The judge admonished the House of Representatives being a body that derives its life from the constitution not to offend the same constitution so as not to end up killing its self. It should therefore act as the bedrock of constitutional democracy.
While affirming that Mr Jibrin and every other member of the House has a constitutional responsibility and in line with the code of conduct of the House to expose corruption, the court ordered the immediate payment of Hon Jibrin’s salaries, allowances and other entitlements from the date of his suspension till date.
The court expressed its annoyance that despite the pendency of a suit seeking injunctive relieves against the defendants, the House still went ahead to constitute a panel to suspend the plaintiff.
Mr Tsoho declared that the actions of the Ethics Committee and the leadership of the House was not only malicious but a gross violation of the rules of natural justice.
The judge commended Mr Jibrin for dropping his claim for 1 billion naira damages against the House in the spirit of reconciliation, even though he is by law entitled to damages, as the law provides that where there is a wrong there must be a remedy, he said.
In his reaction, Mr Jibrin described the judgement as a long walk to justice.
He added that the judgement and the sacrifice he made were victory for democracy and the rule of law.
He thanked his constituents, colleagues, lawyers and all other Nigerians who stood by him and promise to dedicate his remaining term to providing and promoting good representation and governance.