Kaduna: Deposed Chief Zamuna drags state govt to court


A deposed Chief of Piriga Chiefdom, in Lere Local Government of Kaduna State, Chief Jonathan Parguwa Zamuna, has dragged the State Government before the National Industrial Court sitting in Kaduna, seeking an order to restrain the government from his purported dethronement.

The deposed Chief is also asking the Court to restrain the state government from taking further action on the matter pending the determination of the case.

Zamuna is praying the industrial court to order Kaduna state government to pay him N25 million damages for the trauma the purported removal cost him, alleging that it infringed on his fundamental human rights and was carried out without following due process and fair hearing.

Barrister Napoleon ldenala, his lead counsel told newsmen that the paramount ruler was not given any query nor given fair hearing on the offence he was alleged to have committed which led to the harsh action of the state government.

He explained that all attempts by the deposed chief through written letters for the government to give him a chance to state his own side proved abortive.

He said he was left with no choice than to approach the court to demand justice for the breach of his fundamental human rights.

He explained to the court that the Kaduna state government was allegedly attempting to commence the process of appointing a new chief of Piriga to replace the purported deposed Chief Zamuna, praying the court for an injunction restraining the government from continuing with such action.

Counsel to the Kaduna State Government, Barrister Tukur Yahaya, dismissed the alleged attempt by the government to commence a process of appointing another Chief for the stool of Piriga Chiefdom as mere rumour and speculation, saying that he was yet to receive the service notice from the claimant.

The presiding judge, Hon. Justice Sinmisola Adeniyi ruled out the request for an interim injunction against the alleged attempt by the government to commence the process of appointing a new chief, describing it as a mere rumour without proof which could not be entered in the court’s record.

He adjourned the case to 26th July, 2023, for hearing of the substantive motion on notice in order to satisfy the 14 days service window within which all concerned defence counsels or parties would file any response or reactions to the motion for injunction.

Former Governor Mallam Nasir el-Rufai had in his last days in office – on 22nd May, 2023 announced the dethroning of Chief Jonathan Zamuna as Chief of Piriga and General Iliyah Yammah (Rtd), the paramount ruler of Arak Chiefdom in Sanga Council of the state, respectively.

The government, through the Commissioner for Local Government, Umma Ahmad, said the traditional ruler of Arak Chiefdom was deposed for an unacceptable response to a query by the state government over an unauthorised appointment of four District Heads, contrary to the one approved for his chiefdom, and his non-residence within Arak chiefdom.

While the traditional ruler of Piriga Chiefdom was removed following communal clashes between Gure and Kitimi communities and his non-residence within the chiefdom.

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