A Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria has struck out a suit filed by 10 prominent members of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Lagos Diocese, challenging the election held by the church to select the new Bishop of the Diocese.
The presiding judge, Justice Mojisola Olatoregun, while ruling on the notice of preliminary objection filed by the defendants in the case, held that the Federal High Court had no jurisdiction to adjudicate on the case, as a close look at the claim of the plaintiffs did not relate to causes and matter arising from the operations of the Companies and Allied Matters Act or any other enactment under same, much so that the Federal High Court would have exclusive jurisdiction or otherwise.
“The issues raised in the claims of the plaintiffs are domestic in nature. The issues can be compartmentalised as internal discontent and wrangling. It has nothing to do with the regulations and operations of the registered body,” she said.
Consequently, Olatoregun said the only thing left to do was to make an order striking out this suit or transferring same to the State High Court if parties requested and that if there was no application for transfer, same is struck out.
The plaintiffs, who are prominent financial members and elders of the church are, Asiwaju Fola Osibo, Mr Modupe Alakija, Dr. Oluyomi Finnih, Chief Femi Adeniyi-William, Chief Layi Ajayi -Bembe, Mrs Laide Sasegbon, Mrs Modupe Sagoe, Mr Ade Abisogun, Mr Bukola Meadows, and MS Molara Otuyelu, who are suing for themselves and on behalf of concerned members of the Lagos Diocese of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion).
The following parties are the defendants in the suit, the registered trustees of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), the Lagos Diocese of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Reverend Nicholas D. Okoh, Reverend E. Adebola Ademowo, Reverend Humphrey Olumakaiye, and Reverend Dr Michael Fape.