Some civil society organizations (CSOs) under the auspices of the Coalition of Civil Societies of Nigeria (CCSN) held a protest at the entrance of the National Assembly on Friday demanding the removal of Chief Justice of Nigeria Olukayode Ariwoola for a ‘partisan attack comment’ he made at Rivers State.
The group organized the protest over what they described as the CJN’s apparent partisanship and urged the National Assembly to institute an investigation into the circumstances that led to the statement attributed to it.
Ariwoola was reported to have said that he was happy that the governor Seyi Makinde from the state of Oyo, the state of origin of the CJN, was part of the governors of the G-5.
Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Olukayode Ariwoola
The G-5 Governors, which include Mr. Makinde, Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, Samuel Ortom (Benue), Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia) and Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu) are pushing for the replacement of the PDP national chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, by someone from southern Nigeria. following the emergence of Atiku Abubakar as the party’s presidential candidate for next year’s elections.
Mr. Ayu and Atiku come from the north.
The Supreme Court has since discredited the report.
The Director of Information and Press of the Supreme Court, Festus Akande, said that the CJN only spoke briefly at the banquet organized as part of the events scheduled for the implementation of two judicial projects executed by the Rivers state government, and he never made the reputable comment. to the.
We can no longer trust the court under Ariwoola
Speaking on behalf of the group, Ishaku Balogun, the group’s convener, said Ariwoola’s statement undermines the independence of the judiciary.
He said that the CJN has descended into the arena of politics, adding that Nigerians can no longer trust it to be non-partisan.
“The Independence of the Judiciary cannot be considered satisfactory since the CJN has already taken sides in a political dispute within one of the other 18 political parties that are sponsoring candidates in the 2023 elections.
“We demand his immediate dismissal as Nigerians no longer trust him as an impartial judge. The affinity of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Tajudeen Olukayode Ariwoola, in the political dispute is a sign of interference capable of truncating the good efforts already made by the National Assembly.
“Since then, the Nigerian Coalition of Civil Societies reviewed his statements in the commission and came to the conclusion that democracy is in danger,” he said.
Balogun added that “the CJN should step down, otherwise our coalition will press by all legitimate means through the citizens’ rebellion to vacate the exalted, impartial and independent office of the Chief Justice of Nigeria.”
He also alleged that the group also held a protest on Tuesday, but they were dispersed by police.
“A few days ago we went out to save our fought democracy. Nigerian Police Force men unleashed against the US state powers, firing tear gas at peaceful Nigerians who had gathered to express their disappointment at the partisanship of the Chief Justice of Nigeria,” he said.
The Coalition is made up of 18 CSOs including the Nigerian Civil Society Forum, the Nigerian Youth Development Forum, the Democratic Youth Initiative, the Forum for Social Justice, the Development Movement of Democracy and the Safeguard Nigeria Movement.
Others are Alliance for People’s Welfare, Forward Nigeria Movement, Human Rights Crusaders, Defenders of Democracy, Democratic Rights Assembly and Voter’s Rights Assembly.
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