Senate not ready to take Ndume back

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The Senate on Tuesday agreed that Senator Ali Ndume can resume duties tomorrow, Wednesday, November 15, after a 90-day suspension.

The decision of the lawmakers was announced by the deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, after an executive session.

The immediate past majority leader in the Senate, Senator Ali Ndume.

The Borno senator‎ had asked the senate to investigate the allegation that the red chamber was exacting vengeance on Hameed Ali, comptroller-general of the Nigeria Customs Service, because of a seized bullet-proof auto allegedly owned by Saraki.

Defendants in the suit who are now appellants include the Senate President; the Senate of Federal Republic of Nigeria; and Senator Samuel Anyanwu (Chairman Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions).

"The intention of the senate to file notice of appeal on Monday as well as filiong stay of execution of the court judgement is to ensure Ndume won't be allowed to resume on Wednesday".

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In spite of this however, the Senate says it is still contesting the court judgment that ordered it to pay Ndume his salaries and entitlements for the period he was under suspension.

In a statement signed by lawyer to the Senate, Mike Ozokhome (SAN), the upper chamber hinted that it will file an appeal against the judgment of the Federal High Court, delivered on Friday 10th of November, 2017.

Mr. Ndume was subsequently suspended for six months for "bringing Melaye, his colleague, and the institution of the senate to unbearable disrepute" after the Senate adopted the report by the committee. "Dino Melaye has been cleared of the allegations made against him and exonerated".

The submitted that the lower court erred in law when it held that the respondent can join several causes of action in one suit.

The Senate expressed optimism that the decision of the trial court would be overturned by the Court of Appeal.

Mike Ozekhome, counsel to the senate, on Sunday said the upper legislative chamber "respectfully" disagrees with the judgment.