Court Declines Request Seeking To Postpone 2023 Census
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A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, on Thursday, declined a request seeking an order postponing the 2023 Census slated to be held from May 3 to 5.
Justice Inyang Ekwo refused to grant the application, but instead asked the applicant, Omotuyi Ademola, to put the defendant, the National Population Commission, on notice.
Ekwo affirmed that the applicant’s lawyer moved a motion for an interim injunction to postpone the conduct of the 2023 census, however, he said, “on considering the motion, I am of the opinion that the defendant should be put on notice” to appear in court and show cause why the applicant’s motion should not be granted.
In his ex parte application, the applicant stated that the NPC currently lacked effective preparation and adequate publicity towards the conduct of a credible, effective and constitutional census in the country.
As a result, he asked for a declaration that the commission was currently underfunded and thus unprepared to conduct a credible, effective and constitutional census.
He asked the court to determine, “Whether by a true interpretation and construction of the 1999 Constitution and Section 6 of the National Population Commission Act, the aim, intent, importance and purpose of the 2023 census will not be defeated for lack of adequate preparation, lack of adequate awareness and publicity and paucity of funds.
“Whether if the above is in the affirmative, it will not lead to an exacerbated undercount and inefficiency of the census purpose.”
He thereafter prayed the court for an order postponing the forthcoming census for six months to ensure adequate preparation, publicity and adequate funding for the commission.
Justice Ekwo subsequently adjourned the matter until May 5, for the defendant to show cause.