Sunday, 9 October 2016


"Nigeria's nearly two decades of democratisation may be demolished if operatives and officers of the Department of State Services (DSS) are not compelled to comply with the due process of the law, respect the Constitutional principle of separation of powers and operate within the bounds of law in line with the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria  (as amended. The National Assembly and all pro-democratic forces must rally round to protest these series of undemocratic tendencies of the DSS in collusion with the ruling party at the center. This is a challenge against the survival of our hard fought democracy and respect for fundamental freedoms and the smooth operation of all institutions without molestation including the judiciary which must be allowed to independently determine cases filed before their lordships. )".

With the aforementioned the Pro-democracy Non-governmental organisation - HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA  (HURIWA ) has condemned without reservations the nocturnal gestapo style invasions of homes of Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria and judges of the Federal High Court in Abuja and Port Harcourt Rivers State  to abduct the judicial officers including the  justice of the Supreme Court recently recommended for appointment as the next Chief Justice of Nigeria.  

HURIWA condemned  the threats by those DSS operatives to shoot the Governor of Rivers State from the opposition political party or Peoples Democratic Party -Barrister Nyesom Wike who had intervened in the wee hours of Saturday night to stop the abduction of the Federal High Court's judge in the Port Harcourt division. 

HURIWA has also accused the security operatives of possibly  executing  the plots of hardliners and political  hawks in the Hausa/Fulani axis of Northern Nigeria who are not comfortable that the Hausa/Fulani are at the verge of not producing the next Chief Justice of Nigeria in over three decades. The next Chief Justice of Nigeria by merit is Justice Walter  Onnoghen. 

The Rights group expressed alarm that the skewed policy of President Muhammadu 
Buhari in appointing mostly Hausa/Fulani top security chiefs may be what is being plotted for the judiciary with the inordinate ambition to set up an Islamic State with the flurry of visits to President Muhammadu Buhari by Islamic leaers from Saudi Arabia or the government may be plottibg to set up an authoritarianism in the near -future to scuttle a free and fair 2019 general election. 

In a statement on Saturday by the National Coordinator Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko and the National Media Affairs Director Miss Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA said the international community and all lovers of democracy and the Rule of law must rise up and defend Nigeria's endangered democracy from the present threats of destabilisation by reactionary forces embedded within the various security forces who are taking direct orders from President Muhammadu Buhari who has clearly demonstrated absolute intolerance to the smooth running of all democratic institutions and has over time disrespected the binding orders of competent courts of law even as most of his top level appointments are in clear breach of the constitutional provisions of Federal Character principles. 

"We condemn in the strongest possible terms this naked show of brute force by operatives of the Department of State Services and we demand that the relevant institutional mechanisms for checks and balances be activated to get to the roots of all these recent affronts and confrontations  to democracy.  This is so primitive and illegal. This is not how to enforce the law when there are clear provisions of the statutes on how to go about inviting persons required to provide statements to law enforcement authorities"

HURIWA further averred that : "if there are petitions against judges the only institution authorised to sanction them after thorough investigation is the National Judicial Council after which further steps could be adopted if further criminal investigation and prosecutions are to take place, it is only then that the police could be invited decently. We are not at war and Mr President who is the Commander-in-Chiefof the Armed forces is a democratically elected President and not an emperor". 

"Why on Earth will the DSS employ self help by attempting  to kidnap the Abuja Federal High Court judge just because he issued a lawful warning to the DSS concerning a pending matter before his court? This is absolutely unlawful and absolutely despicable and reprehensible.  We call on the United Nations and World Leaders to intervene to save Nigeria from returning to militaey or quasi military- dictatorship". 

HURIWA recalled that news reports have it that Operatives of the Department of State Service between late Friday night and the early hours of Saturday simultaneously invaded the houses of two Justices of the Supreme Court – Justices Walter Onnoghen and Sylvester Ngwuta – as well as two judges of the Federal High Court, Justices Adenike Ademola and Nnamdi Dimgba.

Justices Onnoghen, who is the second in rank and the most likely successor to the outgoing Chief Justice of Nigeria, and Justice Ngwuta are neighbours at the Judicial Officers’ Quarters in Abuja, while Justices Ademola and Dimgba live next to each other at the Apo Legislative Quarters, Abuja.
It was learnt that the DSS operatives surrounded the judicial officers’ houses for hours before they eventually broke in at about 1am on Saturday.

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