The anarchy and doom in Nigerian judiciary.

The history of the Nigerian Judiciary
since independence had seen
characterised with corruption,
political interference, favouritism,
fearfulness and egoism. Nigerians
would not forget in a hurry when a
High Court judge, delivering a
judgment said, his hands were tied
or when the Supreme Court
delivered a judgment and indicated
that that judgment should not be
cited as legal authority in any other
cases in future.
That showed the level of
interference with our judicial system
by the politicians. The adventure of
the military into governance
between 1966 and 1998 was the last
straw that broke the judiciary’s
back, after it had succeeded in
mauling down politics, royalty and
our collective sensibility.
But recently, the judiciary stood on
its two feet to uphold justice. Some
of their landmark judgments
rekindled Nigeria’s hope that indeed,
the judiciary is the last hope of the
common man. However, the crack
in the judiciary in the last few weeks
has given it a devastating blow,
which serves as an invitation to
anarchy in Nigeria. Those behind the
crack are the same military men and
a few political cabals, who had
removed their uniforms and again
usurped the political authority of the
country.
Apart from the military incursion
into politics that is having
devastating consequences on the
judiciary, there are some
subterranean influences that do not
help matters, involving the judges
or magistrates either financially or
through relationship. The lawyers
also are not helping matters either.
And, finally, there is crack in the
judiciary and the cracking of its wall
is capable of spelling doom for the
country. It’s an invitation to anarchy
in Nigeria.
I praise the courage of the Chief
Justice of Nigeria, Justice Alloysius
Katsina-Alu, who confessed that he
contacted Justice Isa Ayo Salami of
the Court of Appeal for security
reasons on the election petition in
Sokoto State on the mater before
the judges who were deciding the
petition. That invariably confirmed
Justice Salami’s allegation that the
Chief Justice contacted him to
interfere in the Sokoto matter..
If Salami had agreed with the Chief
Justice, the matter would not have
come to the public domain in the
first place. However, as the situation
in the judiciary has degenerated into
a mess, wise counsel should prevail
because the nation cannot afford a
disorganised judiciary because
judiciary is the last hope of the
common man and it should not be
politicised as it’s being done now. A
word is enough for the wise.

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