An N100Billion Suit has been filed against President Muhammadu Buhari at the Federal High Court in Abuja over the alleged unlawful removal of Senator Ifeanyi Godwin Ararume as a non-Executive Chairman of the newly Incorporated Nigeria National Petroleum Company, (NNPC).
Mr Ararume is challenging the manner he was removed as the NNPC Chief after using his name to incorporate the entity.
Mr Ararume formulated four issues for determination by the court among which was whether the office of the non-Executive Chairman is not governed and regulated by the stated provisions of the Companies and Allied Matters Act 2010 and the Petroleum Industry Act 2021,
He is also asking the court to determine whether, by the interpretation of section 63 (3) of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021, the President can lawfully remove him as non-Executive Chairman of the NNPC for any reason outside the provisions of the law.
Also listed for determination is whether his purported removal via a letter of January 17, 2022, without compliance with expressly stated provisions of the law is not wrongful, illegal, null and void and of no legal consequence whatsoever.
Upon the determination of the issues in his favour, the plaintiff wants the court to make a declaration that his position as non-Executive Chairman of the NNPC is exclusively governed and regulated by CAMA 2020, PIA Act 2021 and Memorandum of Association of the Company.
He also sought an order of the Court reinstating him forthwith and restoring him to the office with all the appurtenant rights and privileges of the office of the NNPC non-Executive Chairman.
At today’s proceedings, Justice Inyang Ekwo ordered that the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) be joined as a party following no objection from Counsel to Mr Ararume Chris Uche and counsel to the president.
Justice Ekwo subsequently fixed 15th December for further mention in the suit and ordered that the amended originating summons be served on parties before the adjourned date.
Mr Ararume has requested for N100Billion as damages for the wrongful removal, disruption and interruption of his term of office as non-Executive Chairman of the NNPC.