PDP: Onnoghen’s Suspension, Invitation to Anarchy


*Calls on N’Assembly to reconvene and take legislative action against the president

By Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has rejected in its entirety, what it called attempts by President Muhammadu Buhari to foist an illegal Chief Justice on the nation while the substantive Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen, is still in office.

The party said that Buhari’s action in attempting to unilaterally appoint a Chief Justice and foist him on the country was a direct invitation to anarchy, national confusion and a monumental crisis capable of derailing the country’s democracy and destroying its corporate existence as a nation.

The main opposition party therefore called on the National Assembly to reconvene and take legislative action against the President.

The PDP in a statement Friday by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, said the party firmly holds that such impunity cannot stand, as Nigeria is a nation governed by law and not by the whims and caprices of a dictatorial leader.

It said Buhari wanted to ruin the country and vowed never allow him.

The party stated, “It is now clear to the world that President Buhari, in his selfish self-succession bid, is out to cause mayhem in our nation and truncate the smooth conduct of the 2019 election, not minding the consequential human and material losses.”

“There can be no two Chief Justices of Nigeria. Our constitution is clear on how a Chief Justice is appointed and removed as such does not lie on the prerogative of the President. As such, we urge all Nigerians and the international community to recognise only Justice Walter Onnoghen as the Chief Justice of Nigeria.”

PDP stressed further that the world already knows how the Buhari administration had been trying to compromise the electoral process, including the refusal to sign the amendment to the Electoral Act, as well as appointment of his relation by marriage, Mrs. Amina Zakari, to coordinate the collation of presidential election results.

It said, “Nigerians must reject the incendiary move by President Buhari to forcefully suspend our constitution, annex the judicial arm of government and open the nation up for full-blown totalitarianism to achieve his self-succession bid, having realised that he cannot win in the 2019 general election.

“The PDP wants President Buhari to know that this nation belongs to all Nigerians. Our nation is a democratic state governed by the constitution and the law and Nigerians will never allow anybody to appropriate rulership to himself outside the dictates of the law.”

“President Buhari tried to forcefully remove the leadership of the National Assembly and failed. His attempt to annex the judiciary and impose a Chief Justice that will surrender the judiciary to him, is also already dead on arrival.”

The PDP called on the international community and particularly the United States and the United Kingdom to note that this assault on the judiciary was geared towards subverting the 2019 general elections and as such immediately list Buhari and APC leaders for proposed sanctions on election riggers and perpetrators of violence in the general election.

It also called on the National Assembly to immediately reconvene and proceed with legislative actions against President Buhari for this gross misconduct.