THE National Association of Nigerian Students, NANS, yesterday, demanded a reversal of the suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Walter Onnoghen by the Federal Government.
Justice Onnoghen The students’ body accused the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration of a judicial coup through the suspension of CJN without following due process.
The National Public Relations Officer of the students’ body, Adeyemi Azeez, who spoke with newsmen in Abeokuta, described the government’s action as illegal and unconstitutional.
Adeyemi called on the President to reinstate the CJN and allow due process take its course in the alleged case of corruption against the CJN. 2019: Nigerians don’t need sleeping President like Buhari – Secondus He said:
“The leadership of NANS condemns in its entirety the Friday, 25th of January sacking of Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“It is a total affront to the rule of law and constitutional democracy in Nigeria. “Unilaterally and in flagrant violation of the Constitution, he also swore in Tanko Muhammad as the acting CJN.
By this act, the President has precipitated needless confusion in the polity. “It is a shocking action and will aggravate tension ahead of the general elections in February and March.
This poses a great threat to our democracy. “NANS frowns at the way President Buhari substantiated his action by citing an order from the Code of Conduct Tribunal directing Onnoghen’s suspension, his action is akin to a coup – a judicial coup in this case.
“In a subtle way, the President has suspended in part an integral part of the Judiciary arm of government by illegally intimidating its highest figure and shamefully deposing him.
“The petition by the anti-Corruption and Research Based Data Initiative to the Code of Conduct Bureau, accusing Onnoghen of corruption and false declaration of assets has been challenged by the CJN before a competent Court of law and should be allowed to follow due course.
“The Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, in its ruling, ordered the CCT to stay action, pending the determination of Onnoghen’s application that the CCT had no power to try hm.
We wonder why the President hurriedly suspended the CJN citing the CCT order. Onnoghen’s suspension: Protest rocks Lagos as group salutes Buhari’s courage “No matter how grave the allegations levelled against the CJN, the President cannot resort to self-help in addressing the matter, much against the position of the 1999 Constitution.
“The constitution expressly states the procedure that should be followed in removing the CJN. The process is initiated by the National Judicial Council.
“After having critically analyzed the circumstances leading to the CJN’s suspension, NANS calls on President Buhari to reinstate the CJN and allow due process and rule of law to take its due course in the alleged case of corruption against the CJN.”