The national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, on Tuesday, said President Muhammadu Buhari was fair and balanced in his approach by suspending Justice Walter Onnoghen as the Chief Justice of Nigeria.
He said those who were faulting the President’s decision, particularly Alhaji Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party, apparently did not know the difference between suspension and sacking.
Tinubu said this in a statement he personally signed and made available to journalists.
He was responding specifically to Atiku’s state of the nation address in which the PDP presidential candidate faulted Buhari on the matter.
Tinubu said, “Buhari actually exercised considerable restraint in this matter. He has reasonably balanced concerns about the integrity of the judiciary with concerns for the individual rights of the accused.
“Nothing has been taken from the CJN that cannot be restored if the facts warrant such restoration.
“Thus, President Buhari conditionally suspended the CJN. By doing so, this allows for the case to move forward without the CCT or others fearing the CJN might use his position to unduly interfere with proceedings.
“If the CJN is exonerated, then he will return to his position. If not exonerated, then a more permanent discipline awaits him.
“This is an imminently fair and balanced approach, especially given the fact that the constitution and other laws really do not provide clear and unambiguous guidance in how to proceed in a case whether the CJN is the defendant under this unique fact pattern.
“While Atiku rails against Buhari because of this act of restraint, we can but imagine the tack Chief Obasanjo and Atiku would have taken if they presided over this situation.
By now, they would have put CJN Onnoghen in the stocks or shipped him off to that infamous farm in Ota where he would have begun his new career in plucking poultry