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ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!! Bukola Saraki Blows Hot On Buhari, May Begin Impeachment Process

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Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has described the suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen, by President Muhammadu Buhari, as a coup against democracy, and a deliberate attempt to endanger our hard-won democracy.

Saraki, in a statement personally signed by him, stated that the suspension of the CJN, today, was another act of desperation by President Buhari.

He noted that by the suspension of the CJN, Buhari has acted outside the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria, as amended, and has exercised powers which he does not have, adding that, this action amounts to gross misconduct.

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“This is an action aimed at undermining the nation’s Judiciary, subverting the Constitution, intimidating Judges of all the courts of record, and creating uncertainty in the Electoral process, thereby, laying the foundation for influencing the outcome of litigation that might arise from next month’s elections.

“There are already the general belief that this hasty action was taken to pre-empt the already scheduled inauguration of Election Petition Tribunals by Hon. Justice Onnoghen, and to destroy national institutions that are perceived to be uncooperative in his bid to manipulate the Electoral process, leading to next month’s general elections.

“By unilaterally suspending the CJN without following the provision of the Constitution, President Buhari has taken an action which amounts to gross misconduct. He has simply 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 suspension of the nation’s highest Judicial Officer. The Constitution provides a clear process for 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, have different roles to play in that process. There is no condition under which the President can usurp the powers of 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.

“The President and his team must have seen this so-called suspension, as a short-cut to getting Hon. Justice Onnoghen out of the way, since the appellate court has eventually stopped the CCT from continuing with the trial of the CJN. 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 nobody can predict. They have 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 should jointly condemn this retrogressive, uncivilized, and despotic measure”, Saraki stated.

He however, called on President Buhari, to immediately reverse this decision, and allow the due process of law to take its natural course, in determining the guilt or otherwise, as well as the suitability of Hon. Justice Onnoghen, to continue as the Head of the nation’s Judiciary.

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