Obasanjo Slams Court Verdicts Removing 3 Governors
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has expressed his concerns regarding recent court rulings that have led to the removal of three governors.
According to Obasanjo, it is completely unacceptable that a few judges have the power to overturn the will of millions of voters.
Obasanjo’s comments come in light of ongoing judgments by the Court of Appeal regarding electoral disputes arising from the 2023 elections in Nigeria.
Last week, the court ruled to remove governors Dauda Lawal of Zamfara State, Abba Kabir Yusuf of Kano, and Caleb Mutfwang of Plateau in separate judgments, which has caused mixed reactions.
Speaking at a high-level consultation on Rethinking Western Liberal Democracy in Africa, held in Abeokuta, Ogun State, Obasanjo criticized what he referred to as “cathedral pronouncements” made by the judges.
Obasanjo strongly disapproved of a system where a small number of judges have the ability to overturn the decisions made by millions of voters.
“I believe whatever form of democracy we have, three or four men in the judiciary should not be able to overturn the decisions of millions that have voted,” Obasanjo remarked.
“It’s totally unacceptable that millions (of votes), maybe 10 million on one side, maybe 9 million on the other side. Then, you have five people sitting down, three of them agree, two disagree. And you come up and make cathedral pronouncements that cannot be changed, I believe that should not be accepted.”
Renowned human rights activist Femi Falana (SAN) echoed Obasanjo’s concerns, emphasizing the need to curb the judiciary’s influence on elections. Falana criticized the recent trend of courts sanctioning voters and depriving them of their rights based on the errors of electoral officers, citing the Kano gubernatorial dispute as an example.
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