Kano NNPP protests over Appeal Court judgement, as CJN insists emotions can’t replace law
The Chief Justice Nigeria (CJN), Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, has reiterated the judiciary’s determination not to be overwhelmed by the sentiments of the “mob” in their decisions.
Following the rulings on electoral disputes, which led to the sacking of some governors and lawmakers, many have accused judges of bias.
But speaking at the opening of the special session of the 2023/2024 legal year and the swearing-in of 58 newly conferred Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs), Ariwoola asked judges to remain firm.
He said, “I expect every judicial officer to work very hard and also be very honest and courteous to the litigants, witnesses and members of the bar, and discharge all your judicial functions with all the humility at your command.
“Even while doing this, it is still necessary to have at the back of your minds that public opinions, sentiments or emotions can never take the place of the law in deciding the cases that come before you.
“The law remains the law, no matter whose interest is involved. In all we do, as interpreters of the law, we should endeavour to severe the strings of emotion from logic and assumption from fact.
“We should never be overwhelmed by the actions or loud voices of the mob or crowd and now begin to confuse law with sentiment or something else in deciding our cases.
“Nevertheless, unnecessary and unwarranted utterances are bound to embarrass not only others, but the Judge himself; thus what should be asked, should be asked, and what should not be asked, should be avoided.”
The CJN pledged his commitment to safeguard the rule of law, the holistic independence of the judiciary and the trust and confidence of the public.
The CJN further assured that soon the apex court would enjoy its full complement of 21 justices to break the jinx of its inability to meet the constitutional requirement.
Kano NNPP protest over Appeal Court judgment
Meanwhile, protests erupted in Kano city and its environs Monday afternoon with the demonstrators denouncing the recent judgment of the Court Appeal that sacked the state governor, Abba Kabir Yusuf.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that uneasy calm pervaded the state capital following a contradictory Certified True Copy of Appeal Court that affirmed the prayers of both the appellant and the respondent in the contentious Kano governorship, though the judiciary had since cleared the air.
In what appeared like a coordinated action on Monday, huge crowd of protesters had stormed strategic positions in the city as it visited temporary hiccups on commercial activities.
Kano-Zaria road, Maiduguri road by Muhammadu Buhari’s interchange, and Kantin Kwari (Kano textile market) were taken over by hundreds of youths who called for justice for Abba Yusuf.
The placard reads “Kano my city my state”, “Justice for Kano”, ” Justice for Abba”, “Abba’s mandate was stolen in 2019, we will not allow it happen in 2023”.
The protest came on the heels of discovery by the Police that “some faceless group are bent on unleashing violence in Kano”, stressing that the police were on top of the situation.
State Commissioner of Police, Hussaini Gumel, told newsmen in Kano on Monday that already seven suspects had been arrested and would be arraigned soon.
Gumel revealed that “we have the understanding with the leadership of the contending political parties, and they have signed a peace pact, in view of that therefore, any one found outside this arrangement will be treated as common criminal”.
However, normalcy had since returned to the ancient city following the peaceful protest that lasted several hours.
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