Press Statement from the NAL Council – The rule of law is the foundation and bedrock of any democracy. In a given democracy, there are matters that are not justiciable, because the matters are not envisaged to be within the purview of justice.
These include international treaties between nations, or matters that are taken directly to the people, by way of a referendum; or legislative matters taken up by an appropriate legislature.
The matter of Senator Bukola Saraki, which is currently before an appropriate court or tribunal in Nigeria, is a fully justiciable matter, and therefore should not be resolved through political or other meddlesomeness.
The Nigerian people, who have been victimized by various plunders by various leaders, must have a resolution on the merits in cases of this nature.
This is nothing personal against Senator Saraki or other politically exposed persons, but the rule of law needs to prevail in these cases.
Further, according to the thorough research of our NGO partners in Nigeria, this current saga is actually a tip of the iceberg, as there are other formidable matters against various Nigerian leaders that are in the offing, and will be brought to justice in due course.
However, when a person high or low in any given society runs afoul of existing laws, the matter must require a resolution according to the laws of the land; anything less portends clear and present danger of imminent anarchy in the land.
Indeed, the prosecuting authorities and the adjudicating authorities (judges) in Nigeria, will not have the moral right to prosecute and convict a “kidnapper”, an “armed robber”, or a “terrorist” if they cannot summon the courage to absolve themselves from potential compromise by lucre, in other to avoid perversion of justice, per any other accused persons versus 180 million Nigerians.
Unless the judges want to show us that some persons are above the law, in which case it will become a matter of everyone for themselves.
Therefore, in the interest of justice for 180 million Nigerians, who may have been plundered by various Nigerian leaders, the Nigerian judiciary should be resolute in delivering justice to 180 million Nigerians in these matters.
Anything less than a ruling grounded in law and merit, will signal impunity and portend danger for the future of the Republic of Nigeria.
The potential dangers of justice perverted in these matters may not be fully anticipated yet; but it will at a minimum invite for starters, heightened scrutiny on the actual judges that delivered the ruling in a given matter.
We have said in the past, that the long-arms of our worldwide resources, in today’s globalized world, can unearth illicit resources, regardless of where they are hidden.
This moment in time is for justice for the hapless Nigerian citizenry, and justice should be grounded in law and merit, we’ll be watching closely.
About NAL Council: Nigerian-American Leadership Council (www.nalcouncil.org) is a Washington-based think-tank that is focused on Nigeria and on US-Nigeria relations. The Council has been featured and cited in major US Media network in the US and Overseas; and provided expert testimony on US-Nigeria relations at various Washington Institutions. The Council has been adjudged by the US Media, as “A Powerful Voice” on US-Nigeria Affairs (MSNBC February 14, 2015).