Onnoghengate : Over 300 Lawyers defy rain, block governor’s office in Calabar

Over 300 Legal Practitioners with Placards defied the rains in Calabar on Tuesday to protest the suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen by President Muhammadu Buhari
The lawyers from the three branches of the Nigerian Bar Association in the state comprising Calabar, Ikom and Ogoja, converged on the state judiciary headquarters at High Court complex on Mary Slessor Road before proceeding to the governor’s office on Diamond Hill to present a six-point demand to the governor Ben Ayade for onward transmission to the president.

Some of the placards carried inscriptions such as ‘No to Tyranny; Probe CCT Chairman, probe Tanko; we are not in a military era, let rule law prevail; NBA Calabar says no to Executive Rascality; Nigeria not a Banana republic; Justice Onnoghen we know, who is Tanko? among others. The Vice Chairman of NBA, Calabar Branch, Julius Idiege, read the communiqué before it was presented to the state Deputy Governor, Prof. Ivara Esu, who received it on behalf of the state Governor, Prof Ben Ayade. The communiqué issued partly read: “We condemn in the strongest terms, and wholly reject the unconstitutional suspension of Honourable Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen by President Muhammadu Buhari, vide a black market ex parte order issued by the Code of Conduct Tribunal. “We are horrified that the Hon Justice Tanko Mohammed submitted himself to be sworn in as Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, thereby subscribing to this abuse of the constitution and we find the actions of the Code of Conduct Tribunal perfidious and fraudulent.” “Unless this abuse of the constitution is redressed immediately, the rule of law will be in jeopardy and this will drive the country towards anarchy.

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