Ayodele Fayose, Ekiti State Governor, on Monday advised President Mohammadu Buhari to respect the democratic principles of separation of powers by allowing the judiciary to do its job, obey court orders and focus on proper prosecution of people accused of corruption rather than castigating the judiciary and making the arm of government to appear as the stumbling block in his fight against corruption.
The Governor also urged the President to tell Nigerians the truth about the Boko Haram insurgency, saying; “They keep telling us that they have defeated Boko Haram technically while Nigerians are still being killed daily by Boko Haram, with over 100 people killed in Dalori, less than 12km to Maiduguri, Borno State capital.
“Isn’t it now necessary for the President to fulfill his promise of leading from the front and getting his Information Minister, Lai Mohammed to go and hold a press briefing in Sambasa forest unguarded by military men so as to show to Nigerians that indeed, they have defeated Boko Haram technically?”.
Speaking through his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, Governor Fayose said the President should have simply told the whole world that he hated the Nigeria Judiciary because he lost the petitions that he filed against his electoral defeats in 2003, 2007 and 2011 instead of hiding under the fight against corruption to ventilate his anger.
The governor, who said there was nothing wrong with the legal system in Nigeria, added that “in recent times, politicians like President Buhari are the ones responsible for the wrath in the judiciary because of their desperation to use the courts to foist one party state on Nigerians with conflicting judgments from election tribunals.”
He said making noise in the media about discovery of fraud was different from being able to prove allegations of fraud in the court, adding that; “The President and his men should stop media trial and playing with bogus figures. This is because as it is today, President Buhari is not fighting any corruption. Rather, he is engaging in political persecution in his bid to weaken opposition both in the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) and within his own party, the All Progressives Congress (APC).”
“Even the president’s party men are beginning to condemn openly the trial of people accused of corruption in the media, with newspapers quoting Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) on Saturday as describing it as convicting the suspects without giving them fair hearing.
Governor Fayose counselled the president to purge himself of the blood of military dictatorship running in his veins, stop using his fight against corruption to persecute those opposed to his government and begin to structure his government programmes and policies, including the fight against corruption in line with the laws of the country.
He said; “When your own men are corrupting an institution like the judiciary just because they needed to win back states like Rivers, Akwa-Ibom, Taraba and others that they lost at the polls, thereby causing the courts to give conflicting judgments, it is morally wrong for you to go outside the country and complain about such a judiciary.
“When your party men are encouraging people to commit perjury and confess to rigging elections just to discredit electoral victories of PDP and those made to confess to committing these crimes are allowed to walk the streets free just because they are serving the interest of APC, such a president lacks moral rights to complain about any institution stalling his fight against corruption because his own party men are number one promoters of corruption.
“The President must therefore act like a democratically elected president that he is by respecting the judiciary, which is a separate arm of government before his complain about the role of the judiciary in his fight against corruption can be taking seriously.”