Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has declared that the removal of the Chief Justice Of Nigeria (CJN) is the conclusion of the APC Federal Government’s hijack of the judiciary.
Governor Wike stated that if Nigerians allow this criminal action to succeed, then they should embrace the death of an independent judiciary.
Speaking during a courtesy visit by representatives of the National Executive Committee of the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) Nigeria on Saturday at the Government House Port Harcourt, Governor Wike said there must be a sustained national resistance to reverse Buhari’s act of impunity.
He said: “The suspension of the CJN is unfortunate. I raised an alarm when the Federal Government tested the waters by going to abduct judges in the midnight. I knew what the Federal Government intended to achieve. The whole essence was to put the judiciary in their pocket.
“The then NBA leadership played into their hands . They allowed politics and religion to becloud their sense of patriotism. It is not the removal of the CJN that is the issue. There is no more judiciary. No judge will henceforth deliver contrary judgment based on law against the Federal Government “.
He said that the challenge before of all Nigerians is to rise up in practical defence of the nation’s democracy and judiciary.
He said: “Beside condemnation, concrete steps must be taken to ensure that they change their minds. There is no way that Satan can change his mind by mere statements “.
The governor said the script of the Buhari administration is to create a situation where they can easily destroy judges through flimsy allegations and illegal actions.
“This unconstitutional action of the President has several negative ramifications. A governor who hates his State Chief Judge can concoct a petition and unilaterally remove him”, he said.
Governor Wike said that Rivers State is the prime target of the Buhari administration. He said that the new CJN and other judges are under instructions to upturn judgments of courts in states where the APC is in intra-party crisis.
“The Minister of Transportation told his party men that Buhari will use all forms of illegality to achieve his aim. The President wants to act against states where the party is having crisis.
“The whole thing is because APC has crisis in Rivers State. Just because of that, you destroy the whole institution. They want another CJN that will upturn everything . These are the type of actions that generate insecurity “, he said.
Governor Wike said the APC Federal Government has already started intimidating the justices of the Court of Appeal for them to give a legal stamp to the unconstitutional removal of the CJN.
The governor said that if President Muhammadu Buhari gets away with this crime against the constitution, he will go for a third term.
He stressed that if the removal of the CJN succeeds, Nigerians should bid credible polls farewell as the Federal Government can unilaterally sack the National Chairman of INEC over any flimsy excuse.
Governor Wike said that the next victims of intimidation will be the media, noting that media proprietors would be hounded by the EFCC and compelled to dish out lies and half truths.
He added that already the APC Federal Government has used ethnicity and religion to divide lawyers , so as to justify this ugly trend.
Earlier, the Outgoing President of FIDA, Mrs Inime Aguma said the removal of the CJN may lead to a national crisis that will negatively affect women and children.
FIDA called on the Federal Government to have a rethink on the illegal removal of the CJN.
Special Assistant to the Rivers State Governor, Electronic Media.
26th January, 2019.