By Odimegwu Onwumere
An immeasurable axiom states that to make crime pay, become a lawyer. This could be what is playing out in Nigeria where Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s move to the Tribunal to challenge the outcome of the February 23 presidential elections has been condemned by some lawyers. The worst is that they have been lengthening their unsolicited advise to Atiku through the mainstream and social media to refrain from going to court. They also have said that he would face untold hardship at the court.
These lawyers have offered their dim-witted advise without allowing the court to decide the fate of Atiku. No. From calculation, they invariably do not pity Atiku but mocking the porous legal system that he would see or they are behind the scene supporting whom Atiku wants to challenge in the court. They want Atiku to chicken out for the exaltation of Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari for their obvious marooned interest.
Some of the lawyers are in the rank of Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SAN). They forgot that the Buhari they were defending had during the years he lost in presidential elections of 2003, 2007 and 2011, taken his cases to court. It is therefore ethical for Atiku to head to court having the right to do so and it is right to do.
There is nowhere in history where an innocent man is condemned for the praise of the guilty. This is very appalling in Nigeria where men are bent to telling lies for the singular purpose of their stomach. It is aplomb to state that SANs do not make law but the authority which in sane climes is the occupation of the constitution and not political party’s decision.
We are talking of the safety of the people both at the economic, political and social level which are no longer guaranteed under a Buhari government given the untold bloodshed here and there recorded under his leadership which were characterised by Fulani herdsmen. The records are there.
The highlight of Atiku going to court is to make the law respectable since he has shown that he has obedience for the law and this is the foundation of such a renowned business man.
Buhari as a leader, his obedience to lawful authority has been in doubt. An instance is Sambo Dasuki, who upon many court orders directing for his release, Buhari has paid a deaf ear to lawful authority as the judiciary. One Nnamdi Kanu came out of dungeon under Buhari government through the whiskers upon law order to the contrary. Yet, Buhari’s bootlickers invariably remind Nigerians to understand that all that Hitler performed in Germany was legal and right. Hooey!
If there is sound legal system in Nigeria, those advising Atiku not to go to court should know that no one has a monopoly of wisdom and truth. At every meeting place which the court is not different from, progress can only be attained when participants listen to each and are also given a fair ground to do so. What those advising Atiku should do is to remind Buhari of a statement credited to Plato, which states that (sic) Justice in the life and conduct of the State is possible only as first it resides in the hearts and souls of the citizens. Does justice reside in the heart of Buhari? Many Nigerians doubt, because certain degrees of his actions were laced in autocracy even though this is democracy.
In Nigeria, the duty of the government has become to interfer in every aspect of businesses for the purpose of self-centeredness. The government here does not leave legal pursuits to the judiciary without interference. The recent removal of a Chief Judge of the country is a case study. And you wonder where fairness which was supposed to be the real essence of justice is.
Atiku going to court is a fight against segregation in justice equation in the country where fairness is given to some party loyalists but opposition parties should go to hell. Atiku is not going to court to listen to what lawyers will tell him but what justice has in its coffers. It is very bad that in a country when government holds a legal monopoly and recruit touts to scout for who should go to court or not.
Odimegwu Onwumere writes from Rivers State. Tel: +2348057778358. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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