The crisis rocking the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) may not end anytime soon if information reaching us is anything to go by.
On Monday, March 16, 2015, a Federal High Court in Lagos ruled that the election that ushered in Ibinabo Fiberesima into office as AGN president was null and void because it violated an earlier court order, which directed status quo to be maintained.
An actor, St Maradona Mikevine, had taken the matter to court seeking the dissolution of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of AGN and the removal of Ibinabo from office as president of the guild. The court ruled in his favour.
And since the court ruling, popular actor, Emeka Ike, has reportedly proclaimed himself as president of AGN.
But addressing the matter on Wednesday, March 25, 2015 at a press conference held at the guild’s secretariat in Surulere, Lagos, the BoT stressed that Emeka Ike cannot lay claim to the position because he was not joined in the suit with Mikevine, in which judgement was delivered on last Monday.
Chairman of AGN’s BoT, Prince Ifeanyi Dikeh, who addressed journalists on Wednesday afternoon, said, “The truth is that Emeka Ike did not get any judgement or victory against members of the BoT of AGN. His case is suit number FHC/L/CS/365/2011 and it is still pending before Honourable Justice Tsoho of the Federal High Court, Lagos.
“It has been adjourned to Thursday, April 16, 2015 for hearing of the objection filed by Emeka Ike against the appearance of our new counsel in the matter. If the case is still pending in court, how can the same court declare him to be the President without deciding the matter finally? This is the central issue for resolution in that case.”
Dikeh added that, “The truth is that another case filed by St Maradona Mikevine Johnson V Board of Trustees of the Actors Guild of Nigeria suit number FHC/L/CS/734/2012 was decided by the court on March 16, 2015.
“In that case, the court ruled among other things that the term of office of the members of the BoT of AGN has expired. We have since appealed against that decision.
“One of the planks of our complaint is that the members of the BoT, whose tenure was declared to have expired, were not made parties to that action. Despite this complaint, the court, in its infinite wisdom, found against us and we have appealed to the Court of Appeal against that decision.”
Speaking further, the BoT Chairman of AGN said that, “Apart from appealing, we have also filed motion for stay of execution. The implication of filing stay is that the court judgment has not become operative until the motion for stay is decided either in our favour or against us.”
Dikeh also revealed that, “Despite this motion, which is pending, Emeka Ike has been sending thugs to unleash violence in order to take over the office of the president of AGN. This is lawlessness in its extremity.
“In this case, Emeka Ike did not get judgement to start with. Assuming he got judgement, he cannot execute it by himself or through thugs but through court officials, whose responsibility it is to do so. He cannot take laws into his own hands. The fact remains that he did not get judgement, so, he cannot execute any judgement.”
He concluded that, “Even in the action filed by Emeka Ike, he is contending that 17, Ajao Road is not the office of AGN. We wonder why he should come here now to seek to cause commotion.”
At the press briefing on Wednesday were Sunny McDon, the AGN BoT Secretary and the BoT’s lawyer, Nnaemeka Amaechina.