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Ombatse Vs Al-Makura: Court Fixes March 7 For Judgment

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A Lafia High Cout has fixed March 7 to pass judgment in a case filed against Nasarawa State Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura by Ombatse, the Eggon group accused of killing dozens of security agents in May 2013.

247ureports.com gathered that the Nasarawa State Chief Justice Umaru Diko was initially to rule on the case yesterday, but deferred it to next week to allow an application by Mr. Zamani Zachary Allumaga, counsel to Ombatse, to reply a preliminary objection filed by Chief J.S. Okutepa (SAN), counsel representing the state government, Al-Makura and the panel the governor had set up to investigate the mass killings that shocked many Nigerians.

The application is seeking the right of Allumaga and Ombatse to be heard, against a preliminary objection filed by Okutepa asking the court to throw out the case, because the Eggon group was proscribed, and does not have the right to sue as a registered organisation.

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But the application by Ombatse, which is seeking to present a video clip to prove that after the group’s proscription in 2012, the governor still met with them through his agents, and promised to support the group in cash and vehicle donations.

But Okutepa told newsmen after the judgment was shifted, that he has searched through the case filed by the group and could not find where they included any certificate of incorporation, just as he added that the said video clip was not tenable, because it was never mentioned as part of the evidence in the first place, by the plaintiff.

Ombatse had last November when the panel inquiry into the mass murders at Alakyo village was winding up public hearing, dragged Al-Makura to court, and followed up with a petition insisting that their case was at the risk of suffering injustice from a judge previously assigned the matter.

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The group’s counsel went to court on behalf of himself and members of Ombatse, seeking N500 million in damages against the state government, over the banning order which proscribed it in 2012.

The governor was joined in the case with the Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, the state government and the judicial commission of inquiry into the May 7 murder of security operatives.

The group is asking the court to restrain the government from receiving and implementing the report of the panel, and has also asked the court to restrain the panel from proceeding with any activity relating to the Alakyo matter and other related cases within the state, including compiling and issuing a report on the investigation.

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