The Oasis Reporters
June 28, 2019
In the run-up to the final verdict on the Osun State gubernatorial tussle in the Supreme Court, the highest court in the land, political bigwigs have been suspected to be flaunting the name of the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari aimed at intimidating some judicial staff which has come to the notice of a civil society group, The Guardian of Democracy and Development Initiative, GDDI.
The group has wasted no time in warning certain unnamed All Progressives Congress, APC chieftains to stop dropping President Muhammadu Buhari’s name in their quest to influence and corrupt the Supreme Court in its forthcoming judgement slated for July 5, 2019.
Addressing a press conference in Abuja on Thursday, the Executive Director of the group, Comrade Charles Ibiang flanked by other members of the group said “we called you here today to raise alarm over a threat to our nascent democracy by some anti-democratic forces who are bent on dragging the name of President Muhammadu Buhari in the mud. We are here assembled to alert Nigerians that some politicians are scheming to truncate the wheel of justice at the Supreme Court over the ongoing litigation on Osun State governorship legal wrangling.
“As a civil society group with deep interest in the protection and deepening of our democratic culture, we view with trepidation, the ongoing moves to harass and intimidate the judiciary on Osun State gubernatorial judgement. Reports we read and hear in public space indicate that some politicians are dropping the name of President Muhammadu Buhari to compel Lord Justices to do their bidding. If this is true, it constitutes a great disservice to the rule.of law and a threat to this nascent democracy.
“We are aware that President Buhari had publicly tasked the judiciary to perform her roles without fear or favour. We have also read in many publications the declaration by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Tanko Muhammed, to do justice no matter whose ox is gored. These are great commitments which has rekindled hope and faith in many citizens in our democratic society. We hold our leaders accountable to their declaration. In the light of this, we hereby condemn any attempt to repress and oppress the judiciary to serve any partisan political ends.
“We also consider it very reprehensible, any attempt to disrupt the constitutionally based adjudication of the Osun State governorship tussle. The Osun State case is in the eye of the whole world from the beginning till now. Nigerians and the democratic world are expecting nothing but justice for the winner of that election.Any attempt to truncate justice delivery is going to undermine the democratic standing of the nation and that of the Presidency.
We particularly call on President Muhammadu Buhari to stop those forces dropping his name for anti-democratic purposes. The President has a duty to repeat his admonition that the judiciary is free to conduct its activities according to the law and constitution of the land.
“The President has set a standard and he must compel his partymen to observe the rule of law and allow the judiciary to do its work. Osun State case is beyond partisan considerations. It is about the deepening of the national democratic culture.
Ademola Adeleke of the PDP won that election and the judiciary should not be witchhunted to derail justice. Justice must be allowed to he done; it is the way to further legitimise the administration and assure citizens of democratic gains and prosperity.
“We call on all well meaning Nigerians to take note of this imminent threat to democracy occasioned by plots to derail justice delivery. We must be careful not to force citizens to resort to self help.
“We must assure the citizens that remedies exist in the hall of judiciary”, the group said, adding that “we have faith that President Buhari will rein those anti-democratic forces in. The judiciary must be allowed to do its job”, the group concluded.