Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta, yesterday cautioned counsel to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) AB Mahmud (SAN) against delay tactics in the trial of a suit filed against the commission by Beddings Holdings Limited. Beddings Holdings accused INEC of infringing its patent right by contracting three companies to produce voters register for the 2011 general elections without first seeking and obtaining a written licence, consent and authority from it.
It claimed that it was the only company with the patent right to produce Electronic Collapsible Transparent Ballot Boxes, ECTBB, as well as the patentee in respect of Proof of Address System/Scheme, PASS, used for collation and collection of data.
At the resumed hearing in the matter at the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, Justice Auta condemned the attitude of the defence counsel in opening their defence, saying members of the bar were more responsible for the delay in the dispensation of judgment.
He refused to hear oral application made by counsel to INEC, AB Mahmud (SAN), for re-examination of the plaintiff witness due to the inability of Mahmud to cross examine the witness. “I don’t hear applications filed on the day of proceedings because it is not before me yet,” he said.