A Delta State High Court presided by Justice Michael N. Obi, in Effurun, has stopped the factional Primate of the African Church, Most Rev. J. O. Abbe from parading himself as the Primate-elect of the Church.
The Court ruled its judgement following the prayers of Claimants in the case, dated 7/5/2019 that the Defendants be stopped from installing Abbe as the new Primate come May 31.
The Claimants in the case are the Primate of the African Church, His Eminence, Dr. Emmanuel Udofia; Vice-Lay Presidents of Calabar Province, Eld. Idongesit Antia and Engr. Awoye Ogaree; Trustee of the Rivers Province, Evang. Gabriel Mendie and the Vice-lay President of Warri Diocese, Evang. Ezekiel Okorode; while the Defendants are: the registered trustees of the African Church (excluding the first claimant), Lay President of the Church, Evang. Babatunde Odufuwa; General Secretary of the church in Nigeria and overseas, Evang. Eddy Orogun; Chancellor of the Church, Olumuyiwa Aduroja (SAN); and Most Rev. J.O.O. Abbe.
Sequel to the judgement, a release signed by the Court’s Deputy Director, Mrs C.O Idollo, has it that upon the claimants’/applicants’ motion ex-parte dated 7/5/2019, an order of interim injunction has been granted which restrains “the Defendents/Respondents, their agents, representatives, privies, assigns, servants…from confirming or installing or swearing-in or consecrating or enthroning the 5th Defendant or any other person as the new Primate of the African Church”.
The Defendants and their “agents, representatives, privies, assigns, servants and those deriving powers or authority from them” are by the judgement, also restrained from “harassing, humiliating or further harassing the 1st Claimant (Dr. Udofia) by taking any steps and/or initiating any form of disciplinary action against him…or removing him as Primate of the Church…”.
It would be recalled that the Yoruba-speaking members of the church had, in their bid to oust the sitting Primate, picked Abbe and elected him Primate-elect under a sacred oath of allegiance to do their biddings and let go of the position after one year.
Abbe was to be officially installed as Primate on the 31st day of May, 2019.
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