Fresh crisis seems to be brewing in the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) following Eric Omare’s directive to his lawyers to file a contempt suit against Peretubo Oweilaemi for allegedly flouting the declarations contained in a judgement delivered by the Bayelsa State High Court.
Omare was recently declared the authentic President of the IYC by the State High Court sitting in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.
The court ended a prolonged leadership crisis in the judgement that stopped Peretubo Oweilanmi from parading himself as the president of the radical IYC.
Oweilaemi, however, in one of his statements said he had appealed the judgement.
Oweilanmi had in the statement said, “I am pleased to inform the general public especially the numerous Ijaw youths at home and in diaspora that we have successfully appealed against the said judgment in Appeal No: CA/PH/ /2020.
“Those who want to ferment trouble in the Council should be informed that the legal battle has been drawn. I appeal to Ijaw youths to maintain peace at all times, while we take this necessary step to correct the legal blunder. Like I said before, there is no cause for alarm”.
However, IYC Spokesman, Henry Iyalla, in a statement confirming that Omare was prepare a contempt, faulted the claims of Oweilanmi that he had successfully filed an appeal against one of the judgements delivered by Justice E.G. Umukoro.
He said by his utterances, Oweilaemi implied that one of the two Bayelsa State High court judgements aganist him had been set aside by the Court of Appeal sitting in Port Harcourt.
NATION quoted Iyalla as saying, “The statement demonstrated a crass ignorance of law and legal procedures and it is amazing that it came from a lawyer. It calls to question the quality of legal education in Nigeria.
“In the first place, it is important to note that the court in the two different cases to wit: YHC/37/2017: Eric Omare & Ors v. Pereotubo Oweilaemi & Ors and SGA/04/2017 declared that the election that was done at Okrika where Oweilaemi and 10 others emerged as National Officers of the IYC was null and void. In law, when an action is said to be a nullity and of no effect, it means that it never existed abinitio.
“It therefore means that in all these three years Oweilaemi and co have just being wasting their time moving from one place to the other in the name of IYC. The court in the second judgement delivered on Tuesday March 17, 2020 also declared all their actions null and void.
“This point is also implied in the first judgement. The implication is that all Clan, Parliament, chapter and zonal structures set up by Oweilaemi and his Exco are null and void.
“Their participation in any activity of the IYC in their status including the ongoing electoral process would vitiate the process and the electoral committee headed by Bekewei Ajuwa, who is a Lawyer must take special note of this fact.
“Mr. Oweilaemi in the said publication claimed that he has appealed one of the judgements with a non-existing appeal number. For the records PHC/../2020 which Oweilaemi quoted is not an appeal number. It is the height of legal ignorance for Oweilaemi to quote the above as appeal number in his statement. And if i may ask, which judgement did Oweilaemi appeal against? Is it the one in Suit No. YHC/37/2017 or SHC/04/2017?
“Let Ijaw youths and the general public know that Oweilaemi has not even started the process of filing appeal against any of the judgements not to talk of filing an appeal. The appeal procedure involves filing a Notice of Appeal at the court that delivered the judgement.
“Then parties would be invited to compile records of appeal. After compilation of records, the records would be transmitted to the court of Appeal. It is at this point that an appeal number is given by the court of appeal which may take months. So if I may ask, which one has Oweilaemi done? I state without doubt that Oweilaemi’s appeal only exist in the figment of his own imagination”.
He, however, said even if Oweilanmi filed an appeal as he claimed, it would not change the fact that he was never a president of IYC, adding that a mere filing of an appeal would neither stay the judgement of the court nor reverse it.
He continued, “Therefore, it amounts to contempt of court for Oweilaemi to be signing documents and parading himself as President of IYC.
“This is the reason the President of IYC, Eric Omare, Esq has directed his Lawyers to file contempt charges against Oweilaemi and some of his Exco members who are still parading themselves as IYC Exco members. The IYC is not a lawless organization neither a banana republic, so Oweilaemi as a Lawyer must respect the rule of law.
“I wish to also advise Oweilaemi very strongly, first as a kinsman and secondly as a professional colleague that he is risking his professional bar certificate as a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria by his consistent disregard for the judiciary.
“In one of Oweilaemi’s statements, he referred to the first judgement as a ‘black market judgement’. Mr. Oweilaemi may soon go and explain to the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) what that meant in a case that he was represented by a Lawyer from beginning to conclusion.
“I advise Ijaw youths to completely disregard Oweilaemi’s imaginary appeal. It doesn’t exist anywhere and even if he appeals, it doesn’t change the legal position that he doesn’t and never existed until the two judgements are set aside. It would take a minimum of four years for any of such appeal to be heard.
“However, I am confident that all the judgements would be upheld on appeal because Oweilaemi has no case. It was a clear and obvious case, that is the reason why in one of the cases, for complete two years, he couldn’t call a single witness.
“There is no appeal that can be heard and determined before the end of the tenure of the 7th Leadership of he IYC; hence Eric Omare is the Sheriff and Captain of the IYC ship. Swallow your pride, Mr. Oweilaemi and work with President Omare”.