Abaribe Slams Judiciary, NBA Over Onnoghen's Ouster
File: Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe.

The Minority Leader of the Senate, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, on Tuesday, condemned the judiciary and the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for allegedly refusing to oppose President Muhammadu Buhari when he suspended former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen.

Abaribe, who spoke at the Rule of Law Symposium at the ongoing NBA Annual General Conference in Lagos said that the Senate waited in vain for the NBA and the judiciary to act in order to save the situation.

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He noted that the law did not allow the President to unilaterally remove the CJN without recourse to the Senate.

Abaribe said, “The question we ask is, with apologies to Wole Soyinka, if the Bar association is a tiger, where is your ‘tigritude’?

“And the reason we ask this question is simple: we find the bar association blowing muted trumpet when the judiciary is under pressure.

“In the matter of Onnoghen, we waited for the Bar association, nothing happened; we waited for his fellow judges, nothing happened and everybody was looking at us.

“And what were we waiting for? The law is very clear that you can’t remove the Chief Justice without coming to the Senate. Yet, it happened and nothing was done.

“The law does not give the Senate any right to go beyond the Constitution and the Constitution is very specific.”