Real Reason Buhari Wanted Onnoghen Out [Updated]
A source close to the presidency has informed ElombahNews of the real reason behind the sinister plot to remove the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government.
The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, disclosed that the move is related to a recent suit filed at the Federal High Court, Abuja, seeking to disqualify President Buhari from contesting the 2019 general elections.
ElombahNews has recently reported that the Federal High Court fixed January 21 for the suit seeking to ban President Buhari from contesting the election.
According to the report, the plaintiffs, Mr Kalu Agu, Labaran Ismail and Hassy El-Kuris, alleged that the president lied in his form CF 001 submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), regarding his educational qualifications and certificates.
Counsel to the plaintiffs, U.C.Ndubisi , who was holding brief for Mr Okpai Ukiro, informed the court that the matter was for mention.
Ndubisi told the court that all the defendants had been served with the processes and that the president filed an application asking for an extension of time as well as a preliminary objection to the originating summons.
The suit has the president as the first defendant, the All Progressives Congress [APC] as second defendant and INEC as the third defendant.
The plaintiffs want the court to determine, among other things:
- “Whether having regards to the information in the affidavit contained in Buhari’s INEC form, CF 001 regarding his educational qualification/certificate, he has submitted false information to INEC.
- “Whether from the facts and exhibits contained in the affidavit in support of the originating summons and having regards to Section 31(5)(6) of the Electoral Act 2010 as amended, Buhari is disqualified from running for the office of president in the 2019 general elections.
- “Whether Buhari, having submitted false information to INEC, the APC can validly present him as its candidate for the office of president in the 2019 general elections.”
Upon the determination of the aforementioned questions, the plaintiffs seek:
- court declaration that the president submitted false information regarding his educational qualification to INEC to contest elections into the office of President of Nigeria in the 2019 general elections.
- the court to declare that the president, having submitted false information regarding his educational qualification/certificate, is disqualified from contesting elections into the office of president in the 2019 elections.
- order directing INEC to reject or remove Buhari’s name as the presidential candidate of the APC submitted to INEC for the 2019 general elections.
The matter was adjourned until January 21 for hearing of the main suit and the preliminary objection.
According to our source, some powerful figures in the presidency have tried to have the matter quashed at preliminary level.
He informed that CJN Onnoghen was directed to use his influence as Chief Justice and interfere and quash the case but that the CJN “refused to play ball”.
The source also claimed that the latest plot was to prepare the way for suits that will possible emanate from the 2019 general elections.
Onnoghen was, therefore, shown the door to allow for another judge who will do the bidding of the persons behind the call.
The source lamented the desperation of the present ruling government to retain power at all cost.
It could be recalled that another lawyer had filed a similar suit in 2015 but was forced to withdraw the suit after, according to him, some persons threatened him and his family if he goes on with the suit.
He will thus be arraigned on Monday at the Code of Conduct Tribunal [CCT] over allegations of assets declaration.
The Peoples Democratic Party [PDP] has since condemned the move as President Buhari’s plot to destabilise and annex the judiciary ahead of the general election coming up next month.
Similarly, the South-South Governor’s Forum has scheduled an emergency meeting on Sunday to deliberate, among other things, the recent development involving the Chief Justice of the Federation.