Onnoghen: Ortom urges Nigerians to fight impunity, backs NASS on S/Court suit
Nigerian Concord Newspaper
Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, has called on Nigerians to fight the impunity which the Buhari-led federal government has displayed by suspending CJN Walter Onnoghen illegaly.
The governor who made this charge in a press statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase, also commended Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki and Speaker, House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara, as well as the entire leadership of the National Assembly for approaching the Supreme Court over Justice Onnoghen’s suspension.
The governor said Senator Saraki and Hon. Dogara had demonstrated true patriotism by leading the National Assembly to seek interpretation of the Apex Court to the Presidency’s unfortunate sacking of the CJN.
He added that Nigerians are patiently waiting to know the Court’s verdict, whether or not the decision of the Presidency to suspend the CJN amounts to usurpation of the powers of Senate as provided for in Section 292 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).
The Governor also stressed that it is only when due process, the rule of law and separation of powers are respected by the three arms of government that the country’s democracy can grow.
He however called on all Nigerians to reject impunity and high-handedness in any disguise and be prepared to vote without the fear of intimidation during the coming elections.
The governor had at the weekend said that the suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen and his hasty replacement was an attempt by the presidency to truncate democracy and throw the country into anarchy.
Reacting to Onnoghen’s suspensiin, Governor Ortom stated that by the unconstitutional sacking of the CJN, the presidency had demonstrated that it does not believe in the rule of law, due process and the principle of separation of powers.
The governor noted that the suspension of the CJN was not only a slap on the judiciary but the action also exposed the present administration’s desperate self-succession bid at the expense of the country’s unity and its continued existence.
He wondered why the current administration which has no antecedent of respecting court orders acted swiftly relying on a ‘directive’ from the Code of Conduct Tribunal to suspend the CJN.
He said the hurried removal of Justice Onnoghen appears to have the imprints of the cabal which the President’s wife said is running the government.
Governor Ortom however advised the presidency to remember that its integrity is at stake and should reverse the CJN’s suspension in the interest of the country.
He also stated that the All Progressives Congress administration has left no one in doubt regarding its agenda to manipulate the 2019 elections.