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Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Presidential tribunal: judges not recruited from Singapore – Bishop Onah admonishes

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As the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal reels out its final judgment today, Wednesday, the Bishop of Nsukka Catholic Diocese, Rt. Rev. Professor Godfrey Onah has argued that the judges are all Nigerians who experience the same hardship as the rest of Nigerians.

Onah said the judges were not recruited from Singapore and are expected to give a fair judgment.

He advised Nigerians, especially those saying “all eyes are on the judiciary,” to tone down a bit.

In a video message posted on his personal Facebook page on Tuesday, the Bishop also advised the judges to give a fair judgement and not that which is based on equivocation, legal quibbles and technicalities.

The Bishop said: “What does it profit a nation, the people, if it has all the wealth but has lost its citizens. Nigeria is one of the wealthiest nations on earth but because of bad leadership we have lost our citizens.

“Many of our young people are leaving a country they have lost confidence in. And if you give the example of Igbo land, the southeast, individual Igbo people may have a lot of wealth, driving very expensive cars and building marvelous and humongous mansions, but we have lost our youths, we have lost our values.

“Time has come for us to ask ourselves questions about what is essential in our lives and gradually rebuild our broken nation.

“And with regard to our country Nigeria, many people are now saying ‘all eyes are on the judiciary’. That may be true but I want to remind all of us their honourable justices are Nigerians.

“They didn’t fall down from heaven and they were not recruited from Singapore. They are products of the same corrupt society in which all of us live in. So we should moderate our expectations because great expectations herald great disappointments.

“But whether you are in the judiciary, executive or in the legislature, we must have clear signs and indications about the right way to choose and change our leaders.

“Military coups are wrong. They don’t solve any problem, they only make them worse. But dissatisfied citizens must know how they can change their leaders. If the rich and the powerful manipulate the constitution, manipulate the electoral process, manipulate the judiciary and kill protesters when they protest unarmed, what other alternatives are left to them?

“Yes, the judiciary, the last hope for the oppressed, whatever judgement the tribunal will give, some may rejoice, others will protest.

“So, that judgement must not be clothed in equivocation and legal quibbles and technicalities. That judgement must be so clear that all of us common Nigerians will understand that justice must have been done. Otherwise, we blame ourselves for the consequences.

“What does it profit a nation if it has all the wealth but has lost its citizens.”

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