When Senate Scuttles S’Court Judgments

When Senate Scuttles S’Court Judgments
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The Supreme Court as the final court of adjudication is to give its last word on any issue that goes before it. Indeed, given the doctrine of separation of powers as enshrined in the constitution, the three arms of government-the executive, legislature and judiciary are supposedly independent but correlated to ensure the smooth running of statecraft.

In the equation is the Judiciary which is to give justice to the people, whenever they may approach it. It awards punishment to those who after trial are found guilty of violating the laws of the state or the rights of the people.

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The aggrieved citizens can go to the courts for seeking redress and compensation. They can do so either when they fear any harm to their rights or after they have suffered any loss. The judiciary fixes the quantity and quality of punishment to be given to the criminals. It decides all cases involving grant of compensations to the citizens.

Among other functions, the judiciary interprets and applies the laws, makes the law by defining meaning, nature and scope of laws passed by the legislature, defending the rights of citizens and the powers to enforce laws and judgements emanating from it among others.

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In the line of duty, all the three arms of government vis: the executive, legislature and judiciary ought to be independent but complementary. They are expected to perform independently but cooperate in order to deliver the goods seamlessly to the people.

Different phrases have evolved through the ages to describe the invaluable role the judiciary plays in the scheme of governance. ‘The safeguard of democracy’, ‘hope of the common man’ and ‘defender of the defenceless’ among others are some of the appellations that have come to be associated with the judiciary.

AljazirahNigeria salutes the courage of judicial officers who have relentlessly stood firm against all odds to defend justice notwithstanding whose ox is gored. Landmark decisions and pronouncements over the years have become a huge repertoire on which the nation’s jurisprudence has continued to rely on. It would therefore be uninspiring to rubbish this all important subset in the gamut of governance.

We are averse to the continued disobedience of court orders and rulings, judgements by various segments of the other arms of government. Judicial pronouncements especially when coming from the apex court expectedly is law personified and must be hallowed against all odds and interests of parties involved.

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However, it is a sad commentary for our democracy when leaders in the democratic mix desecrate the judiciary by dishonouring its pronouncements. We are not in any mould to go into the archives to dig out some of these breaches in the past but we are concerned that the recklessness with which judicial pronouncements are jettisoned is disgusting and worrisome.

A case in point is the outstanding case of the candidate representing Cross River North Senatorial District, Hon. Jarigbe A. Jarigbe who has been adjudged the rightful winner of the December 5, 2020 By-election following the death of Senator Rose Okoh which paved the way for the election.

The Senate leadership is yet to come to terms with the position of the court as if there were ambiguity in the decisions of the apex court on the authenticity of the candidates and thereby continued to dilly-dally in swearing-in of the candidate declared eligible to take the seat at the hallowed chamber. Importantly, as the Imo North Senatorial contests were recently put to rest by the apex court, the leadership of the Senate should respect the decisions of the court by without further delay swear in the Senator-elect Sir Frank Ibezim to enable him contribute his quota and adequately represent his constituency.

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However, AljazirahNigeria is wary of the lopsidedness of some judgements which are laughable and obviously leaving loopholes that could be deciphered even by the ‘unlearned’. Where the judiciary compromises and bend backwards to undo justice in favour of its preferences, then it becomes a clog in the wheel of justice anywhere. It is on that note that we counsel that revered arm of government to maintain the utmost level of integrity expected of it.

Aljazirahnews


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