Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre (YEAC-Nigeria) and Fyneface Dumnamene Fyneface on Tuesday, December 13, 2022 at the Rivers State High Court sitting at the Port Harcourt Judicial Division in the case between YEAC-Nigeria, Fyneface Dumnamene Fyneface vs Mr. Mao Nangi Obu in Suit No. PHC/1057/CS/2021 recorded massive victories and floors the defendant, Mr. Mao Nangi Obu.

The motions on notice which were meant for determination and ruling on December 13 as adjourned from November 30 as reported to our members, supporters, Board of Trustees (BoT), local and international development partners in our communication dated Wednesday, November 30, 2022 were;

1. Ruling on a motion filled by the defendant for the Court to strike out the Certificate of Participation of the Executive Director, Fyneface Dumnamene Fyneface in International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) issued to him by the United States of America’s (USA) Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs in 2018 that it was not supposed to be added at the response to statement of defense stage.

Fyneface Dumnamene was issued the certificate in 2018 after participation in IVLP which was postponed from 2017 after YEAC-Nigeria was formed as mandated in the program documents to serve as a platform to implement the experiences from American communities with a mission of “Strengthening Community-Based Advocacy in the Niger Delta through Multi-Stakeholder Engagement”.

Note that the defendant had stated in his defamatory publication on social media that YEAC-Nigeria is a “fraudulent organization” among other unprintable names and in response, YEAC-Nigeria and Fyneface presented the certificate in addition to other documents to further support their arguments and evidences that an organization established on the mandate of the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs on participation in IVLP upon nomination of its Executive Director by the United States of America Embassy and Consulate General in Nigeria, checked upon from time-to-time by the American Consulate General/Embassy in Nigeria, registered with Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) with certificate as well as registration by the Special Control Unit Against Money Laundering (SCUML) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) among others cannot be a “fraudulent organization” etc.

Ruling on this motion, the Court said attaching a certificate as part of proves in response to a statement of defense does not constitute over response that should warrant striking out the certificate or document attached.

The court therefore struck out the defendant’s motion, paving the way for the certificate to be part of the case in victory to YEAC-Nigeria and Fyneface Dumnamene Fyneface.

2. The second motion on notice from the defendant was for “Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre (YEAC-Nigeria)” to be struck out from the case for not having “Incorporated Trustee of” attached to it.

The defendant had further argued that YEAC-Nigeria is neither an incorporated trustees nor corporate entity or personality that can sue and be sued therefore, it should be struck from the case.

In response to this claim, the Claimants had through their lawyers filed a motion, giving reasons why the Honourable Court should not strike out the name of the first claimant (YEAC-Nigeria) from the suit and also sought for the leave of Court to amend the suit to read “Incorporate Trustees of Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre”

Ruling on this second motion, the court held that the defendant in many documents he filed before the Court including his statement of defense had acknowledged and recognized the first claimant, Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre as an incorporated trustee and an NGO. So, he cannot turn around and asked the Court to strike out the name of the same organization he had earlier acknowledged for not being registered when there are overwhelming evidence in the court documents that the NGO is registered.

The Court therefore also struck out this motion saying that “the defendant cannot probate and reprobate at the same time”.

This ruling means that the organization, Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre (YEAC-Nigeria) will remain as a part of the suit and first claimant and also pave the way for the Claimants’ lawyer to amend the suit and insert “Incorporated Trustee of” if he so desires.

Speaking further, the court expressed unhappiness over the incessant filling of motions that do not hold water by the defendant thus dragging the case backwards from substantive hearing adding that this case has over stayed in court and then adjourned the matter to February 8, 14 and 15, 2023 for hearings.

Congratulations 👏 🎉 👏 🎉 to us all.

We thank all our members, partners, Board of Trustees, local and international development partners who are with us and interested in how this case progresses to a logical conclusion for this missive victories and flooring of the defendant in Court on December 13.

God is with us; thank you for also standing with us to see this case to its logical conclusion.

Executive Director, YEAC-Nigeria