Onnoghen Suspension: Reverse the decision or be ready to face the music, Senate President warns Buhari
In a statement on Friday, the Senate President noted that the action of the President was unconstitutional and capable of undermining the Nation’s judiciary.
He maintained that President Buhari has sent a wrong signal to the International community that Nigeria was no longer a democratic country and urged him to reconsider his decision or be ready to face the music.
The Statement reads:
“The suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Hon. Justice Onnoghen by President Buhari is an action capable of undermining the nation’s judiciary, subverting the Constitution, intimidating judges, and creating uncertainty in the electoral process.
“By unilaterally suspending the CJN without following the provisions of the Constitution, President Buhari has sent a dangerous signal to the entire world that Nigeria is no longer a democratic nation and that we have returned to the old, jaded era of military dictatorship.
“Our Constitution makes no provision for the suspension of the nation’s highest judicial officer.
“The Constitution provides a clear process for the removal of the CJN and specifies the roles of the three arms of government, beginning from the National Judicial Council (NJC), the National Assembly and lastly, the Presidency — all have different roles to play in that process.
“There is no condition under which the President can usurp the powers of the other arms of government.
“I do not know where the President and his advisers got this idea of suspending the CJN on the so-called order of the Code of Conduct Tribunal but this is novel, disingenuous and alien to our laws.
“It is strange that President Buhari is claiming to be taking orders from a Tribunal which has been ordered by a superior court to halt all actions on the trial.
“With this action, President Buhari has initiated a process the consequence of which no one can predict. He has precipitated a Constitutional crisis.
“At this point, all democratic institutions in the country, the international community and democrats across the world should rise against this blatant act of impunity.
“We must jointly condemn this retrogressive, uncivilized and despotic measure.
“I call on President Buhari to immediately reverse this decision and allow the due process of the law to take its natural course,”