Update: Breaking: APC calling On President Buhari to Dissolve Supreme Court after Abia, Rivers, Akwa-Ibiom States verdicts favored PDP New York[RR]Abuja–Breaking: APC calling On President Buhari to Dissolve Supreme Court after Abia, Rivers, Akwa-Ibiom States verdicts favored PDP–Questions about the honesty and integrity of the supreme court of Nigeria are now raised all over the […]
Update: Breaking: APC calling On President Buhari to Dissolve Supreme Court after Abia, Rivers, Akwa-Ibiom States verdicts favored PDP
New York[RR]Abuja–Breaking: APC calling On President Buhari to Dissolve Supreme Court after Abia, Rivers, Akwa-Ibiom States verdicts favored PDP–Questions about the honesty and integrity of the supreme court of Nigeria are now raised all over the country and beyond. At issue are two events—-(1) the election tribunal court and (2) federal appeal court in their separate ruling, said that no election took place in Akwa Ibom State on April 11, 2015 based on evidence they had gathered. Why did the supreme court of Nigeria ignore these two findings by the election tribunal and federal appeal courts to overturn their decisions? That is troubling to many Nigerians. Those troubling by supreme court action include for example, remark from a National chairman of Nigerian ruling Party, APC, Mr. John Oyegun.
Vanguard Newspaper quoted Mr. Oyegun calling for supreme court probe because of his belief the court is corrupt and has taken bribe to influence its decision on the appeal process. And a few days before Mr. Oyegun raised his concern about supreme court corruption, President Buhari has expressed similar concern, which in part said that judiciary is his main headache in a fight against corruption. Also raising concerns about corruption among the supreme court judges is Transition Monitoring Group–an organization charged with the responsibility to oversee how elections are conducted in Nigeria
Transition Monitoring Group had in its reaction to supreme court ruling compared court action to armed robbery. To me, that is very powerful statement to hear a respectable organization like TMG described the supreme court as an armed robber. It sends a signal of mistrust for the supreme court judges.
So, what can President Buhari do to help Nigeria to regain confidence in the country judiciary system? The president can do many things. In this paper, I talk about two of those things, and why.
First thing, President Buhari should set up a panel to review and recommend the need to retire the supreme or court judges. This panel should consist of people knowledgeable in how to get rid of court judges—especially those linked to corruption without amending the constitution. That is because amending the constitution will take a long time , and it will likely be blocked by the corrupt lawmakers. This concern is related to the composition of the supreme court members.
The composition of Nigerian supreme court members makes it difficult for the justice to obtained by ordinary citizens who are victims of injustice. Most of the judges at the supreme court were appointed by PDP presidents such as Obasanjo, Yar’Adua, and Jonathan. These judges are as corrupt as people who appointed them. And they will do everything to undermine president Buhari’s ability to defeat corruption. Don’t forget, supreme court judges decision to uphold fraudulent election in Akwa Ibom State was an attempt by the court to warn President Buhari to drop his promise to defeat corruption in Nigeria. These court judges know their days of being exposed to corruption are numbered. That is why the supreme court judges are using appeal process in the court as a warning shot against war on corruption.
Second, Probe supreme court judges. They were appointed by PDP presidents to keep them and their cronies in power. That is why these court judges ruled in favor of a political party which appointed them to the supreme court. And these judges are the same people who acquitted the former governor of Delta state, James Ibori after he was charged with 187 counts of indictment for money laundering and stealing of Delta state government money. Mr. James Ibori is now pulling 13 years jail term in UK, London—something that could not have succeeded in Nigeria because of corrupt judges like those in supreme court.
Recently, PDP senator and senate President, Mr. Saraki has been rumored with intention to appeal to supreme court if ICP convicts him of filling false financial information. And Mr. Olisa Metuh is out on bail for stealing over N400m government money given to him to fund President Jonathan re-election. A few days ago, Mr. Metuh was quoted as promising not to return the money to the federal government and instead promised to appeal his case to supreme court if convicted. If Senator Saraki and Mr. Metuh appealed their cases to supreme court, they will be exonerated by the current supreme judges. The current supreme court judges are too corrupt to be allowed to continue in their current path.
Finally, recognizing the supreme court ruling on Akwa Ibom state governorship election will encourage more of the same. As a citizen of Akwa ibom State, I want to urge citizens in the state not to recognize any PDP candidate as the state governor until election is held and Akwa Ibom state citizens are allowed to chose who should be their state governor through electoral process. Nigerian supreme court, as is currently constituted, is too corrupt for its decision to be respected. I reject supreme court decision on Akwa Ibom state governorship appeal case for good.
Credit: Ekong Etuk