Adeboyega Awomolo, counsel to Walter Onnoghen, suspended chief justice of Nigeria (CJN), says his client’s case has shown that the country’s judiciary is very weak and not independent.
Awomolo’s client is standing trial for fasle asset declaration.
In a statement on Monday, the lawyer said it is unacceptable that the executive arm of government is the accuser, investigator, prosecutor and judge all rolled into one.
While calling for a reform, the lawyer noted that constitution guarantees the independence of the three arms of government
Awomolo said the CCT should have tribunals established in each of the six geo-political zones of the country because monopoly “breeds corruption.”
“The executive is the accuser, investigator, prosecutor, the witness and the judge all roll together into one,” he said.
“This is unacceptable under the constitution that guarantees independence of the three arms of government. There is urgent a need for constitutional reform.
“The Code of Conduct Tribunal must have courts established in each of the six geo-political zones of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Monopoly has the ability to breed corruption, arrogance, disregard for due processeses and partiality.
“The Code of Conduct Tribunal should be a full member or part of the judiciary under section 6 of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended.
“The 3rd lesson is that the case has clearly shown that Nigerian judiciary is very weak.”
Awomolo wondered why there was no verdict on Onnoghen’s appeal at the court of appeal six weeks after argument.
“There is no association of Nigerian judges to speak a word. Let no public officer or judicial officer at any level throw stones because if not at all, most are as guilty as Onnoghen,” he said.
“Nobody knows who is next, a precedent has been laid.”
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