The Nigeria Bar Association(NBA) has kicked against the suspension of Osun Chief Judge Justice Oyebola Ojo by Governor Ademola Adeleke.
The Osun Assembly on Thursday had recommended suspension of the CJ after which Adeleke directed Justice Yinka Afolabi be sworn in to acting capacity.
However, the NBA through its National Secretary, Publicity Secretary, Akorede Lawal in a statement on Saturday morning said the body won’t recognise anyone as Acting CJ.
The association described the action of the State Government as illegal, breach of rule of law and assault against the judiciary coming from democratically elected governor.
It said: “The action of the State Government is an abuse of the rule of law and a desecration of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 ( as amended).
“In very vivid terms, the actions of Governor Adeleke and the Osun State House of Assembly are unwarranted assault on the Judiciary and aimed at intimidation.
“The NBA wishes to categorically state that the provisions of the 1999 Constitution are not ambiguous as to the way and manner a Chief Judge of a State could be removed from office. Certainly, a State House of Assembly resolution for a Chief Judge to “step aside” is unknown to the law of our land.
“Furthermore, the law has since been settled in Nganjiwa v FRN (2017) LPELR-43391 (CA) that any misconduct attached to the office and functions of a judicial officer must first be reported to and determined by the National Judicial Council (NJC).”
It added: “Specifically, the Supreme Court in Elelu-Habeeb & Anor v AG Federation & Ors (2012) 12 NWLR (Pt 1318) 423 has clearly stated that the Chief Judge of a State cannot be removed under any guise including the infamous “step aside style” by the Osun State Government without recourse to the NJC. The NBA is further worried and troubled that in going about its unlawful endeavour, the Osun State Government chose to ignore the lawful order of interim injunction granted by the National Industrial Court sitting in Ibadan, which restrained the Governor of Osun State from interfering with the office of the Chief Judge of Osun State.
“This is untoward, coming from a democratically elected state government. All decisions of court must be obeyed and complied with until they are set aside by a superior court of competent jurisdiction. The NBA’s position is anchored on the constitutional doctrine of separation of power and the independence of the judiciary.
“The tenure of a judicial officer can not and should not be subject to the mood of politicians. To this extent, the NBA and its members shall not recognise Hon. Justice Olayinka Afolabi as the acting Chief Judge of Osun State, because the provisions of the law must be complied with strictly, in the removal of, and/or appointment of the Chief Judge of Osun State.
“The NBA shall take all necessary steps to ensure this impunity and brazen abuse of office does not stand!”
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Liberia’s George Weah Concedes Defeat To Boakai
Liberian leader and football legend George Weah conceded defeat to opposition leader Joseph Boakai after a tight presidential run-off, saying it was “time to put national interest above personal interest”.
The latest and nearly complete results showed Boakai leading with nearly 51 percent of the votes in Liberia, Africa’s oldest republic founded by freed American slaves.
“The results announced tonight, though not final, indicate that… Boakai is in a lead that we cannot surpass,” Weah said in a speech on national radio late on Friday.
He said his CDC party “has lost the election but Liberia has won,” adding: “This is the time for graciousness in defeat”.
The 78-year-old Boakai lost to Weah, 57, by a large margin in the second-round presidential vote in 2017.
With more than 99.5 percent of the polling stations reporting vote tallies after Tuesday’s second-round vote, Boakai had garnered 50.89 percent of ballots cast, according to the election commission.
Boakai was 28,000 votes ahead of Weah, according to Friday’s figures. The two finished neck-and-neck in the first round last month, with a national lead of just 7,126 votes for Weah.
The election of Weah — the first African footballer to win both FIFA’s World Player of the Year trophy and the Ballon d’Or — had sparked high hopes of change in Liberia, which is still reeling from back-to-back civil wars and the 2014-2016 Ebola epidemic.
But critics have accused his government of corruption and him of failing to keep a promise to improve the lives of the poorest.
The United States congratulated “president-elect Boakai on his victory and President Weah for his peaceful acceptance of the results”.
“We call on all citizens to follow President Weah’s example and accept the results,” US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said in a statement.
‘Liberian people have spoken’
Weah said he had spoken to Boakai “to congratulate him on his victory”.
“The Liberian people have spoken, and we have heard their voice. However, the closeness of the results reveals a deep division within our country,” Weah said in his speech.
“Let us heal the divisions caused by the campaign and come together as one nation and one united people.”
Weah who remains president until the handover of power in January pledged to “continue to work for the good of Liberia”.
It will be the second peaceful handover of power from one democratically-elected government from another in two decades.
The elections were the first since the United Nations in 2018 ended its peacekeeping mission, created after more than 250,000 people died in the two civil wars in Liberia between 1989 and 2003.
International observers, including the European Union, have commended Liberia for holding a peaceful election.
Regional bloc ECOWAS, the Economic Community of West African States, said the poll was “largely” peaceful, but noted isolated incidents that led to “injuries and hospitalisations” in four provinces.
Clashes during the campaign left several dead before the first round and raised fears of post-election violence.
Around 2.4 million Liberians were eligible to vote on Tuesday and the turnout was roughly 66 percent, according to the electoral commission website.
Boakai is an old political hand, having served as vice president to Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa’s first elected female head of state, from 2006 to 2018.
Liberia is home to around five million people and one of the poorest countries in the world.
More than a fifth of the population lives on less than $2.15 a day, according to the World Bank.
We’ll Defeat You Finally At Supreme Court – Ganduje Tells Yusuf
The National Chairman of All Progressives Congress, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje, said they are not afraid of facing the ousted governor of Kano State, Abba Yusuf, and his New Nigeria Peoples Party at the Supreme Court following their loss at the Court of Appeal on Friday.
The immediate past governor of Kano also hailed the judiciary for living up to expectations.
Ganduje’s praise came hours after an Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal affirmed the APC candidate, Nasiru Gawuna, as the winner of the governorship election in Kano.
Delivering judgment on the matter on Friday, the three-member panel led by Justice M.A Adumeh held that Yusuf was not qualified to contest the election as he was not in the membership register of his political party.
Addressing newsmen at his Asokoro residence on Friday, Ganduje said it would be unfair not to also appreciate the NNPP for dragging them to court in the first place.
He however boasted that they would match them grit for grit at the apex court after the appeal court threw out their case.
He said, “I thank Allah for this important judgment. We have to thank the judiciary for providing a good administration of justice despite all the distractions that have taken place since the beginning of the case. There is no doubt this is a victory for democracy. It is a victory for APC and a victory for Kano State. “This is an indication that democracy has come to stay in Nigeria. Democracy we can say is matured in Nigeria. We have to thank all those stakeholders even the political parties, even the NNPP that took us to the Appeal Court.
“There is no doubt that after the election you get to litigation. And the end is always determined by the judiciary. For Kano State, this victory is for all of us. We are fully aware of what happened during the election.
“A lot of malpractices took place and we took the issue to the tribunal. And by the grace of God, we got a fair judgment in favour of our great party, the APC. Now the government in power, the NNPP decided to go to the Court of Appeal, and this morning, the Court of Appeal affirmed the judgment of the lower court.
“By so doing, our gubernatorial candidate Dr. Nasiru Gawuna is the duly elected Governor of Kano State. But in all, probably they will go to the Supreme Court which is part of democracy. There is nothing wrong for them to go to the Supreme Court. We too, are ready to meet them in the Supreme Court. And Inshallah, we will win in the Supreme Court as well.
“But, we want to assure the people of Kano State that the good administration that was provided in my eight years of administration was my deputy Dr. Nasiru Gawuna and now, the Governor-elect for Kano state will provide a similar not even similar. I believe he will provide a better administration more achievements will be recorded in Kano State. Because that is what we expect.”
Speaking in the same vein, Gawuna shared the sentiment of the APC national chairman when he attributed the victory to God and the judiciary.
The APC candidate of Kano also vowed not to disappoint the people of Kano State.
“Whoever goes to the court like this and is given judgment in his favour definitely will feel very happy and grateful to Allah for the Court of Appeal to affirm his victory.
“I am so happy. I am also still deep in my thoughts because I have to sit down and think very well. But because of the confidence and expectations of the people in us, Insha Allahu we are praying that we will not fail our people,” he stated.
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Mohbad: Naira Marley, Sam Larry Released From Police Custody
Police in Lagos State released musician and label owner, Azeez Fashola, (Naira Marley) and Samson Balogun (Sam Larry) from custody on Friday after meeting their bail conditions.
The duo had been in police custody over October’s mysterious death of rapper, musician and song writer, Ilerioluwa Aloba (Mohbad).
Police spokesman in Lagos State, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, confirmed their release in a statement he issued on Friday at Ikeja.
Naira Marley, Sam Larry and two others were arraigned before a Yaba Magistrate’s Court on Oct. 6, over their alleged involvement in the death of Mohbad and were remanded in police custody.
The court granted them bail on Nov. 6 in the sum of N20 million with three responsible sureties in like sum.
The magistrate, Adeola Olatunbosun, ruled that the defendants should submit their passports and report weekly to the State’s Criminal Investigation Department at Panti, Yaba.
“Naira Marley and Sammy Larry, having met their bail conditions, have been released from custody,’’ Hundeyin stated.
Born in Lagos on Jan. 3, 1996, Mohbad died in mysterious circumstances on Sept. 12, 2023 and was buried the following day.
His death sparked nationwide protests making the Lagos State government to order the exhumation of the body for a coroner’s inquest.
Mohbad was said to have attended a concert at Ikorodu, Lagos State on Sept.10 where he sustained injuries in a fracas.
Among those the police questioned over his death were the late singer’s father, mother, sisters, brother, friends, wife and manager.
The police also invited a childhood friend of Mohbad, Ibrahim Owodunni (Primeboy) for questioning.
Police detained Naira Marley and Sam Larry over their alleged roles in the singer’s death as they were reported to have been bullying the rapper.
Mohbad was formerly signed to Naira Marley’s Marlian Records, but left the label in 2022.
Addressing a news conference in Ikeja on Oct. 5 on preliminary findings on Mohbad’s death, Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, Mr Idowu Owohunwa, named an auxiliary nurse, Feyisayo Ogedengbe, as the prime suspect.
Ogedengbe was reported to have injected the deceased thrice in his home on Sept. 12 before he started vomiting and developing goose bumps.
Owohunwa said 26 persons had been interviewed concerning Mohbad’s death.
According to Owohunwa, Mohbad was taken to the hospital lifeless and was declared dead on Sept. 12 by the attending physicians.
He said the auxiliary nurse was called to inject the singer at his home by Mohbad’s friend, Ayobami Isiaka, aka “Spending’’.
Ogedengbe gave the singer three injections that were believed to have resulted in a series of events that led to his death, the police commissioner said.
He said that Primeboy and Mohbad went to the concert together on Sept. 10 and they engaged in violent altercation after the show.
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