Members of the coalition of Niger Delta under the umbrella of Agitators had threatened it would attack the Nation’s oil infrastructure if federal government does not back down on its plan to arraign the chief justice of Nigeria (CJN) Walter Onnoghen before the code of conduct tribunal (CCT)
Onnoghen, who is from the region, is expected to appear before the CCT today over a six-count charge of alleged false declaration of assets.
The threat was contained in a statement by one General John Dukku on behalf of Niger Delta Watchdogs, Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators, and others.
The statement reads in part: “President Mohammadu Buhari was not disposed to Justice Onnoghen’s appointment to this position, which was why he refused to confirm the appointment after so many months of (Onnoghen) serving in an acting capacity. It was during the period of his sickness while in Britain that the acting president, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, confirmed the appointment.
“We wish to also recall that in August last year, Mr Matthew Seiyefa of Bayelsa State, who was the most senior and most qualified officer at the time, was appointed to the position of acting director general of the Department of State Services by Prof. Osinbajo, only to be replaced with a retired and junior officer to Mr Seiyefa, Mr. Yusuf Magaji Bichi by President Buhari as soon as he (Buhari) resumed duties. We hereby vehemently resist any attempt to remove CJN Walter Onnoghen from office.
Meanwhile, five of the six governors of the south-south held an emergency meeting yesterday and called on the CJN to ignore summons coming from the bureau
Their communiqué was signed by Henry Seriake Dickson, Governor of Bayelsa State; Nyesom Wike, Governor of Rivers State; Ben Ayade, Governor of Cross River State; Udom Emmanuel, Governor of Akwa Ibom State; and Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor of Delta State.
It reads in part: “We hereby call on the president to condemn without any equivocation this assault on the CJN and the judiciary, especially coming after similar assaults on the National Assembly, to save the country from this embarrassment and global contempt.
“We call on the CJN to ignore this so-called court summons from the CCB and the provocative call for his resignation in some quarters. While we are not opposed to a genuine fight against corruption, such action must always be anchored on the rule of law.
In alignment with the agitators, the governors noted: “The unceremonious removal of former acting director general of the Department of State Services, Matthew Seiyefa and his replacement is still very fresh. We note that the unfortunate action against the CJN further reinforces the perception that the Buhari administration has no regard for the sentiments of Nigerians, in particular, the people of the Niger Delta, and the rule of law.”