EKITI State Governor and Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Ayodele Fayose, has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for heeding to public outcry on the appointment of Justice Walter Onnoghen as the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN).
Fayose said: “Even though the President acted late, it is still commendable that he listened to Nigerians by not allowing the judicial institution, which is the last hope of the common man to be further bastardized.”
The governor said “I waited till now to commend President Buhari because I wanted to be sure that the letter seeking Justice Onnoghen’s confirmation was actually transmitted and read at the floor of the Senate. Also, I needed to be sure that the letter did not get missing at the national assembly like the 2016 budget, new items smuggled into it or it gets padded on transit.”
According to a statement issued on Wednesday by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, Governor Fayose said: “Even though the name was forwarded by the Acting President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, the Acting President couldn’t have done that without the concurrence of President Buhari even though he is resting in the United Kingdom.”
While calling on the Senate not to waste time in confirming Justice Onnoghen as substantive CJN, Governor Fayose appealed to the new CJN to always bear it in his mind that there is another judgement in heaven and ensure that the judiciary under him dispense justice to Nigerians without fear or favour.
He said the judiciary, under Justice Onnoghen should help in sustaining democracy by resisting the plot by the All Progressives Congress (APC) led federal government to turn Nigeria to a one-party state.
“Opposition is one of the major ingredients of democracy and any attempt to kill opposition will spell doom democracy in the country. The judiciary must therefore resist the APC sinister plot to deny Nigerians their fundamental rights to freedom of association and expression.
“Justice Onnoghen should strive to uphold a judiciary that will be seen by all Nigerians as their last hope in practice and indeed,” the governor said.
Speaking further, the governor called for full enquiry into petitions against Justice Okon Abang, whom he maintained was “a cancer that is capable of destroying the entire judiciary in Nigeria if nothing is done to curb his excesses.”
He said a judge like Abang who was described by the Court of Appeal as giving fraudulent judgments, speaking from both sides of his mouth and acting like Father Christmas should not be allowed any space in the judiciary.
“Therefore, I insist that the CJN should wade into Justice Abang’s fraudulent judgments with a view to showing him the way out of the bench so that our judiciary can redeem its image,” Governor Fayose said.