AS you read this, the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) is practically dead though not buried. The guild is in limbo after the sack of the Ibinabo Fiberesima-led national executive by Justice James Tsoho.
Irked by what he termed disregard of court order, the no- nonsense judge nullified the election that brought in the former beauty queen and her executive. And over three months after the landmark judgement, AGN has not held any meeting for fear of contempt of court which could send them to jail.
Meanwhile, concerned members of AGN have called on the Board of Trustees to step in and resolve all issues threatening the union of actors. Their fear is that the continuous existence of the guild would be in the best interest of Nigerian actors. But it appears the BOT led by Prince Ifeanyi Dike is yet to revive the guild formed to protect the interest of actors.
Sadly, the secretariat at Ajao Road, Surulere, Lagos, has been deserted as critics allege Ibinabo has converted it to her personal office.
Contacted on Monday, July 20, 2015, to speak on the state of the guild, Ibinabo, who is still out of the country, didn’t take ENCOMIUM Weekly’s call. But speaking on behalf of AGN, the Chief Whip before the court order that annulled Ibinabo’s election, Empress Ene, said the guild is very much alive.
She claimed AGN appealed the judgement. She also said Ibinabo remains the guild’s national president. Asked when the executive was re-validated, she said it was sometime in May. She, however, knew nothing about the court and the judge that vacated Justice Tsoho’s court order.
On alleged conversion of AGN national secretariat to Ibinabo’s personal office, she said, in as much she wouldn’t speak for her, she is the one paying the rent.
AGNBOT Chairman, Prince Ifeanyi Dike was not available for comment when we called him on Monday, July 20.
A Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday, March 16, 2015, sacked the Ibinabo Fiberisima-led executive of Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN). The trial judge, Justice James Tsoho, in a judgment, declared the election that brought Ibinabo-led AGN executive into office as null and void and of no effect whatsoever. The court held that the election was conducted against a clear order of court that parties should maintain the status quo.
Justice Tsoho ruled that the incorporated trustees of AGN acted with utter impunity in disobeying the clear order of court. “It is not in doubt that the parties in this suit are entertainers but the business of court is a serious one and it cannot be turned into a legal play and for this reason, the election is hereby declared null and void,” he ruled.
Justice Tsoho further ordered Ibinabo to henceforth stop parading herself as the AGN president, as well as other national officers that emerged from the said election that brought them into office.
Besides, Justice Tsoho ordered Ibinabo and all the national officers of her executive to render full accounts of monies generated by the AGN under her, including details of income and expenditure.
– UCHE OLEHI