Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Court restores Owumi as NPL boss

After months of tussle over the chairmanship of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL), a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has ordered Davidson Owumi to resume office, SuperSport.com has learned.

Presiding judge, Gabriel Kolawole gave the order that Owumi return to office pending the determination of a suit he filed challenging his removal by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).

In December 2010, the Congress of the NFF voted out Owumi as NPL chairman in Uyo based on the report of an arbitration panel chaired by Professor Ibidapo-Obe.

But Owumi went ahead to sought an injunction in court restraining his removal from office as well as conducting fresh poll for same position.

In a hearing in March this year, Justice Kolawole did ask the NFF and others joined in the suit to give reason within a week why the court should not grant Owumi the prayer he is seeking.

Rather than address the issue, the NFF through its counsel filed an application to challenge the jurisdiction of the court to sit over the matter.

And when the case came up on Tuesday, Owumi's counsel, Sunday Ibrahim Ameh, a senior advocate of Nigeria, told the court that the NFF and Victor Baribote Rumson, who filed to be joined in the suit, did not respond to the court's request within the one-week grace given.

Ameh's insistence that the court addressed itself on the issue before moving on to sit on the matter of jurisdiction paid off as Justice Kolawole agreed.

The judge ruled that the NFF failed to give course on why the injunction should be struck out.

Justice Kolawole, however, directed that Owumi return to office as chairman of NPL pending the determination of the suit.

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