PDP vs APC: Coalition calls NJC to caution Justice Omotosho over impunity in Benue

December 5, 2022
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From Msurshima Andrew, Makurdi

The Benue Coalition for Democracy, (BCD), has called on the National Judicial Council, (NJC), to quickly, caution Justice James Kolawole Omotosho for his gross acts of impunity against the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP), in Benue state.

The coalition’s Coordinator, Aoysius Gbakaan, in a statement, alleged that Justice Omotosho has deliberately withheld certified true copies of the court judgements he delivered on the pre-election cases instituted by the PDP.

They recalled that on Monday, November 28, 2022, Justice Kolawole, at the Federal High Court, Abuja, delivered judgment in a suit filed by PDP and its Governorship candidate in Benue state, Titus Uba, challenging the controversial primary election which produced Rev.  Hyacinth Alia as the APC gubernatorial candidate in the state.

The group pointed out that the court judgment was delivered in favour of the APC and its disputed candidate in very unclear terms.

They noted that “We also note that the same Justice Kolawole had earlier on Monday, November 14, 2022 delivered judgment in suit between PDP & 32 Ors V INEC & 34 Ors involving State Assembly candidates on the PDP platform and those of the APC. In this case too the learned judge gave the verdict against the PDP.

“While we do not intend to delve into the facts or substance of those above mentioned cases, as a pro-democracy group that seeks the cause of justice in all electoral matters across all political parties, we find it suspicious that many days after delivering judgment on the governorship matter, Justice Omotosho has not released certified true copies to the PDP and its team of lawyers when he is fully aware that the party and its candidate are time bound to appeal the judgment within 14 days.”

The group viewed the action of Justice Omotosho as clearly against judicial processes saying it was the height of impunity by every stretch of imagination.

They noted that the judiciary is a hallowed institution whose integrity must be protected and upheld and the flagrant demonstration of impunity by Justice Omotosho in allowing himself to be manipulated to withhold copies of the said judgment to the PDP is totally unacceptable and not in tandem with extant laws.

They reaffirmed their confidence in the judiciary as an institution that serves all Nigerians irrespective of political affiliations, and expressed hope that NJC will urgently compel Justice Omotosho to do the right thing by releasing the judgment to the parties concerned so that they could seek further redress if they are not satisfied with his verdict.

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