Skip to main content

Our Supreme Court On The Wheel Chair By Tunde Akingbondere

March 24, 2023

The Supreme Court of Nigeria is in the heat of the moment, it stinks of sensational stories and scandals every now and then. Since the days of renowned Justice Walter Onoghen to the days of his brother, Tanko Mohammed, including the incumbent Olukayode Ariwoola, the temple which is expected to harbour the chief sentinels of justice has remained the hive of bees, chorus of outright cacophony and the ridiculous. 

The apex court is towering, immaculate and final. It is not given to baseless scrutiny by entities with less knowledge. Else, it loses its salt, it becomes the least reverred in the gathering of men. It is neither a marketplace or a table of the money-changers.

Until recently when the Supreme Court descended to its basest level, it used to be the portal of the Saints and incorruptible. It used to be the throne of courageous elements and accountants of justice. They are not merely swayed by the usual legal incantations and maxims, they are appealed to by the gospel of truth. They dont place their selfish interest over that of the State.

Onoghen, on being booted out of office for compromising his core responsibility to the State by reportedly visiting Atiku Abubakar in Dubai and even setting high-profile criminals free, cried out, he said, "emerging Nigerian judges should not go the direction of injustice, because, without courageous judges and justice, Nigeria is doomed."

After Tanko Mohammed was exorcised by Onoghen's ghost, his recalcitrant children have refused to go with him. They are the owners of the State and have inhabited her structures unchallenged, not even by the next man in line, Ariwoola. Ariwoola didnt have issues living with the ghosts of his corrupt ancestor.

Iseyin-born Ariwoola is a controversial judge whose personality invokes emotional purging. He is blunt and weak. He was toasted to a defeat by the sight of the dancing steps of the G5 governors. The romance with G5 humbled the Supreme judge before a mere agency of the State, SSS. Our Chief Justice was investigated by the security agents, quizzed like a prime suspect, especially on crediting Seyi Makinde's alliance with the group.

The rot in the system isn't the judge's fault, it started from the excess power endowed the president to directly influence the CJN option, pay him and command his security of life, by the constitution. A judge should not romance politicians, he should not fall for their acrobatics, stunts and antics. He should be the secluded monk and not the incapacitated wheelchair man. 

The judge, upon whose neck the burden of justice lies is distracted. He hires spin doctors to defend his lies, just as he tried to justify the controversial judgements recognising Ahmed Lawan and Godswill Akpabio as Senatorial candidates of their party.

At a critical time like this when justice Ariwoola and the other Supreme Court judges are on a serious trial in their country, he has chosen to steal out in a wheelchair, just like DSP Alamiesegha who disguised in a woman's skirt, stole out from the United Kingdom where he was under serious trial and monitoring. Ariwoola wants convenience while Nigeria is sitting on gun-powder.

I seem not to be interested in either if Bola Ahmed Tinubu, a man who was designated a kleptocrat, drug lord and godfather of Lagos Politics by UKTIMES, lied or not. I am not particularly disposed to believing that he has lied that he needed to go treat himself ahead of the swearing in, or maybe he went to start another round of criminal job. 

I feel Ariwoola has right to good health, despite the controversy surrounding his travel. Though a bit unwarranted at a critical period like this, when the three main parties have petitioned, protested and sought the court to determine who paddles the country. The entire country is currently looking up to the Supreme Court. 

Should we leave Nigeria and go look for courageous, incorruptible judges abroad, especially while our judiciary is fully positioned on the wheelchair?