JUNE 8, 2012 BY IHUOMA CHIEDOZIE, ABUJA
Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Dahiru Musdapher, on Thursday expressed concern over conflicting judgments from the various divisions of the Court of Appeal, as well as the Supreme Court.
In his address at the maiden Nigerian Monthly Law Reports Lecture Series at the International Conference Centre, sAbuja, the CJN bemoaned the development.
He blamed the development on the creation of different divisions of the Court of Appeal.
Musdapher said, “I must mention that quite a number of judgments from the Court of Appeal and a few from the Supreme Court appear to have created some confusion amongst practitioners and the general public.
“This untenable situation further underscores the importance of this lecture.
“We have witnessed a lot of confusion regarding the proper application of the principle of judicial precedent.
“The creation of several divisions of the Court of Appeal has also led to the unintended problem of conflicting judgments at the appellate court.
“Such judicial contradictions have a tendency to lead not only to confusion in judicial precedent but could cause untold hardship to litigants in their quest for justice.”
The CJN added, “These conflicting judgments not only confuse counsel but the public as well, further leading to uncertainty regarding the public perception of our ability to guarantee unequivocal justice.
“This portrays the judicial process as a game of Russian Roulette where any outcome is possible.”
He advised judges to carefully consider that precedents were unmistakably reflected within the context of the current case, whenever an issue begs for determination.
A Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, Lord Carnwath of Notting Hill, who delivered a lecture entitled ‘Judicial precedent: Taming the Common Law’, said greater certainty in law was the most important advantage in the principle of judicial precedents.
He said, “The existence of a precedent may prevent a judge from making a mistake which he might have made if he had been left on his own without any guidance.”
According to Carnwath, the principle can also allow people to generally order their affairs and come to settlements with a certain amount of confidence.
Photo: Chief Justice of Nigeria, Dahiru Musdapher
Dear Sir Honorable Chief Justice of Nigeria,
Justice For Akwa Ibom Organization is a human rights Organization created to be the watchlion of the society on behalf of the everyday people to be a voice where the people are unable to speak, to be the sight when the people are blinded, to be the strength when the people are weakened, to be the hope when all hope is lost, and to reach out for the suffering ones and give them reason for living.
We are not for some people but we are for all our people, the pDeople of Nigeria. We are here in America and also in Nigeria. Whatever happens this 31st of May, 2012, regarding the cries of justice not only from the people in Akwa Ibom but from the entire nation of Nigeria, will determine the tide of the future. If justice is denied it will only prepare grounds for the people of the nation of Nigeria to stand up in a very short amount of time just like what has happened in Libya, Egypt, Syria, Yemen, Cote d’Ivoire, and so many other countries that the wind of change is blowing across now. There is no weapon stronger than the power of the people. If everything fails the people would have to take their stand and make those who have put them through hardship and misery pay. That day is the day that people will know who the most powerful ones are. The ones with the most power are those whom God stands beside.
With all the evidence the world has seen about Godswill Akpabio’s corrupt ways and the atrocities he commits everyday against innocent people in the State of Akwa Ibom, Godswill Akpabio is still boasting of how he rigged the election and openly claiming that the Judiciary of Nigeria is in his pocket, as you can hear in the video which we sent to you (http://youtu.be/U1gu0UTAH1E), while he has no repercussions and he still retains his illegally stolen mandate of Governorship while the man whom the people gave the mandate to, Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe, is standing trial for what he is innocent of. Justice For Akwa Ibom has even posted evidence and sent it to you including this new Video and its accompanying script of Godswill’s ambush terror attack and the framing of Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe which proves Governor Akpabio’s guilt along with the other evidence we have posted and sent to you. Even so, we still have more astounding evidence in which we will continue to publish and shock the world in hopes of freeing the people of Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria and preventing Godswill Akpabio from planting an evil tree that will root so deep the State will never recover and even when he leaves its evil will taint the soil of the state. Governor Godswill Akpabio is just like James Ibori who committed crimes and walked as an innocent and free man in Nigeria, but now Akpabio must pay as James Ibori also has as Ibori has been found guilty and is in jail in the United Kingdom for the same crimes in which the Judiciary of Nigeria could not find him guilty. It is shameful.
That means our society punishes the innocent while the guilty go free. Remember that there is no one individual more powerful than anyone else but all the people united are more powerful than the few who abuse their position and use it against those whom they are supposed to serve and protect. Sir, I remind you today, hopefully you will be able to read this before you preside over the case that is before you that what goes around certainly comes around. The mercy you show the people today and the justice that you give to them is the same that the people shall return to you and your family on the judgment day which is around the corner. It is said that to whom much is given, much is also expected. Our nation has given you much and you are now in a position to help free the people and turn things around. Do not allow this opportunity to pass you by. Do right by the people and God will do right by you. Thank you and God bless Nigeria and the people on behalf of Justice For Akwa Ibom Organization.
The link to the video on YouTube is: http://youtu.be/NWBAbxVmhfs.
The blog can be found at http://www.justiceforakwaibom.wordpress.com.
Also the issue can be seen on Justice For Akwa Ibom Organization’s page on facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/JusticeForAkwaIbomOrganization/.
The Nigerian Voice Published Justice For Akwa Ibom’s Article: Injustice on Display: How clean is the Chief Justice of Nigeria—Musdapher?
|Opinion | 15 May 2012 Last updated at 08:57 CET
Injustice on Display: How clean is the Chief Justice of Nigeria—Musdapher?
By Justice4 Akwa Ibom Organization
About a month ago, a source from the Supreme Court hinted the staffs of Justice4 Akwa Ibom Organization that the Chief Justice of Nigeria (Justice Musdapher) has compromised with the Presidency over the case of Senator Udoedehe versus Godswill Akpabio, which is pending in the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
According to our very highly reliable source, President Goodluck Jonathan sent a secret message to Justice Musdapher asking him to find a way and make sure that the pending Akwa Ibom Governorship Election Hearing should not be allowed to see the light of day. When the staffs of Justice4 Akwa Ibom expressed doubts over what was told them by the source, the source advised our staffs to wait and see what will happen on the day the case will be summoned for a hearing.
Today, May 14, 2012, when the matter was heard by the Supreme Court, presided over by Justice Musdapher, what our source told us would happen actually unfolded. The following exchanges occurred between the ACN lawyers and Chief Justice Musdapher;
CJ Musdapher: “What do you want? Do you want me to validate the constitution? Haven’t we decided on this case already? We cannot hear this case.”
Counsel for the Plaintiff: “Your Honor, we are not asking you to validate the constitution. We are asking you to hear the case, that section 285 subsection 6 of the 1999 constitution seek to alter section 36 – subsection on the right to a fair hearing within a reasonable time, which is a fundamental right provision. Secondly, section 285 subsections 6 also seek to alter section 6a of the constitution which provides for power of court, independent of court, and separation of power between the executive, the legislature, and the judiciary. This is the basic and foundational feature of the constitution which cannot be altered. Any purported alteration would be null and void. These are what we want the Supreme Court to do so we can go back and hear this case, which has not been heard in the first place, because 180 days provided by section 285 subsections 6 is not applicable. Section 4 subsections 8 of the 1999 constitution do not give power to the legislature to limit the jurisdiction of the court in Nigeria.”
CJ Musdapher: “We cannot write judgment in 14 days. We are all old people.”
Then he adjourned the case to May 31, 2012. These are the issues that the Supreme Court and the chief justice want to dodge so that Godswill Akpabio can continue to rule on behalf of the PDP. It is worth mentioning that as far as this matter is concerned, the Nigerian Constitution allows 60 days for the hearing of Appeal. The 60-day limitation will expire on June 2, 2012.
If the Supreme Court judges cannot write judgment in 14 days, even though the constitution allows them to hear the case the same day and can give the judgment the same day, then the case would be thrown out. If the hearing is on May 31, 2012, and the expiration day for the appeal process is on June 2, 2012, then how are the judges going to be able to write judgment in 2 days? Justice Musdapher said in court that they are old and tired; therefore, they cannot write judgment in 14 days. Then how are these same old men going to be able to write judgment in 2 days, because on June 2nd, 2012, the case would be out of statute as the time allotted will run out?
This seems to go the way our source from the Supreme Court informed us one month ago when he tipped-off our staffs that the Judges want to play into time for the case to fall out of the allotted time and then they would use that as an excuse not to hear the case.
It could be recalled that this approach was also done to Steve Ibanga in his case against the PDP and the incumbent Governor, Godswill Akpabio. As everyone might have seen on the Godswill Akpabio 2011 Nigerian Election Corruption and Bribery Undercover-Video posted by the Justice4 Akwa Ibom Organization on YouTube, Godswill Akpabio has said that the system would back him to continuously oppress the people and that the people will never get justice and that there is no justice in the Judiciary System of Nigeria and that the Governor will capitalize on that to achieve his aim on behalf of his party and the Presidency.
So, if Chief Justice Musdapher is truly a Chief Justice of repute, with clean hands and good intentions for his countrymen and women, we are about to witness, and the world is about to see, if this is the same man who lamented on the 14th of November 2011, that the “world is watching Nigeria” and that it was “too early for him to begin to lose his mind” and that cases should be “heard on its merit for the sake of justice” but not on technical grounds.
On that date, Justice Musdapher also said that all cases that were not heard should be returned for hearing. Then he went ahead to say De Novo, meaning in Latin afresh. We demand that the people of Akwa Ibom State and all other people affected in whatever unjust justice in Nigeria must get justice now.
A nation without justice, equal rights, fairness, and human rights, can never and will never survive. When there is only injustice in everywhere and every day then there is no hope for the weak and the poor ones in Nigerian society. Those who mitigate and support injustice should bear in mind that what goes around will definitely come around.
Our country’s Chief Justice says they are all old; we appreciate and understand their condition, which is inevitable. In fact we rejoice their old age with them, we also thank God for keeping them alive to this day. But because they old, do they have to destroy the country and leave it in ruins before they die?
Certainly, we must not allow these people to deal with us as if we are fools. We must stand up to them. We must give a voice to Akwa Ibom and Nigeria so that justice can prevail without regards to class, party, tribes, or status. Justice now: that is what the people need and that is what the people want. Injustice against one is injustice against all. One Love, on behalf of Justice4 Akwa Ibom Organization.
Justice4 Akwa Ibom Organization
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The Justice for Akwa Ibom Organization has watched with dismay the calamities and pains inflicted on the people of Akwa Ibom State Nigeria since the beginning of Governor Godswill Akpabio’s administration. While several attempts have been made by many to rescue the people, Governor Akpabio, the Peoples Democratic Party-the PDP, and the Presidency have thwarted such efforts, because they think that there is no person in Akwa Ibom State who can stand up to challenge them.
Justice for Akwa Ibom demands for a fair hearing in the election case of Governor Godswill Akpabio and Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe. The State has permanently become a tyrannical police state with a very high rate of unemployment among the youths and the adults. Often, those who are lucky to find employment with the government hardly get paid on time and even when they are paid, it is done sporadically. Despite being the richest State in Nigeria, Akwa Ibom is increasingly becoming a State of joblessness where hunger abounds.
The people have died and are still dying in astronomical numbers. Despite denials and a clamp-down on the media, crimes of kidnapping, rape, and arbitrary detention of those perceived as political opponents are still going on in Akwa Ibom State. The rate of poverty and squalor has climbed to an astounding record. There is so much insecurity. In Akwa Ibom State, everyone is living in fear and the Governor continues to loot all the State’s treasury, while hiding under the umbrella of the Immunity Clause in our Constitution. These are some of the reasons the people in Akwa Ibom State are yearning for positive change. It is also the reason they are determined to embrace the change that was brought by the opposition party, CAN (Action Congress of Nigeria), with Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe as their party governorship flag bearer.
From the beginning, our people (Justice For Akwa Ibom Org) have been on the ground in Akwa Ibom to follow and to independently keep records of all the activities of the candidates involved in the just concluded 2011 Nigerian Election. During the process of collecting information, our people witnessed the murders of many people who were not supporters of Godswill Akpabio. The families of the victims are aggrieved and are waiting for justice.
During the 2011 Election, we also witnessed members of the State Security Service being stripped naked and given lashes upon lashes, beaten and injured in so many different ways. Mobile police officers were brutally beaten by the soldiers of Godswill Akpabio in Ikot Ekpene. We took note of police officers who were brutalized but have now nursed their wounds because their superior officers would not dare say anything since all of them are in the pocket of Godswill Akpabio. These individuals are alive. We intend to use them as evidence to show the extent to which Governor Godswill Akpabio has become so reckless and corrupt. To Akpabio, anything money cannot do, more money can do; which explains why he is running Akwa Ibom State as a country within a country, with a strong believe that the Presidency and the Judiciary are in his pocket.
The whole world has seen this in the undercover video, which was provided by Justice for Akwa Ibom Organization to the entire world to view. In that video, the Governor was caught distributing millions of Naira while bragging about how he rigged the election and stole the mandate which the people of Akwa Ibom State gave to Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe.
Before the 2011 Governorship Election, Governor Akpabio issued a warning that no other political party should hold a political rally in Ikot Ekpene, his hometown. While Governor Godswill Akpabio was campaigning in all crannies and nooks of the State, he instructed his foot-soldiers to block the ACN flag bearer, Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe, from campaigning at all. Every place that both candidates campaigned, we had our members monitor the proceedings. We found that there were no problems or troubles in areas that Godswill Akpabio campaigned.
However, in the areas that Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe did his campaign, Akpabio used government operatives to haunt his opponent, thereby stopping him from using particular preferred venues. On one occasion during the usage of Uyo Township Stadium, after President Goodluck Jonathan went to Uyo to support Godswill Akpabio’s campaign which had very few people – the natural and common features of his rallies – two days after the President left the State, Godswill Akpabio sent all his operatives to lock up the stadium, to prevent Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe from flagging off his own campaign from there.
Some of our men who happened to infiltrate Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe’s security heard the Senator begging the director of the State Security Service to please help and let him at least use the stadium. It was not up to 10 minutes when the SSS Director called back and told him he was free to use the stadium. When the Senator told the people to go to the stadium to set up that night for the next day’s rally, they met with the forces of Godswill Akpabio, which threatened to shoot and kill them. Some of Udoedehe’s people escaped and contacted the Senator. The Senator, again, made a telephone call to the Director of the State Security Service and begged him to help and call Godswill Akpabio to tell his forces not to kill his men. Luckily, in less than five minutes after the call from the State Security Service, that was achieved.
Despite all these, John James Akpan Udoedehe displayed a great patriotic character and adhered to the rules and regulations of the electoral laws. When the train arrived in Ikot Ekpene on the 22nd of March, 2011, where our members were on hand observing and recording the gathering, Godswill Akpabio’s private army descended on the innocent and law abiding Akwa Ibom citizens. So many died. The families of those killed are still in distress and waiting for justice. John James Akpan Udoedehe, his wife Justina John James Akpan Udoedehe, and his deputy Imeh Sampson Umana from the Annang extraction (who is now being framed up by Godswill Akpabio for threatening his life and the case of which the court had recently thrown out a confessional statement credited to Mr. Umana for having been obtained under duress), and the members of the Justice For Akwa Ibom Organization were all attacked.
Several people died and the only reason why John James Akpan Udoedehe, his wife, and his deputy are still alive today is because they were in bullet-proof vehicles. By the time they got to Uyo, the capital of the Akwa Ibom State that night, the State Governor had organized his thugs to burn government property and even the so-called President Goodluck Jonathan’s campaign office, which was guarded by groups of armed men, riot police, and vigilante groups of Annang extraction (Annang is the language group of Godswill Akpabio). It is only the Governor who could have given the order for those guarding the place to stand down and let his thugs burn down the place and that is what Akpabio did. By the time John James Akpan Udoedehe, with all the distress and agony, got to the State capital where he resides, in the wee hours of the following day, Governor Akpabio, the Police Force Headquarters, and the Presidency had ganged up, framed and proceeded to arrest him for treason. The Senator was tortured, beaten, humiliated, framed, and persecuted without just cause. Governor Akpabio’s thugs attempted to persuade Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe to denounce his candidacy and step down to gain his freedom and allow the incumbent Governor Godswill Akpabio to go unopposed.
However, Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe refused, knowing that Akwa Ibom people needed emancipation from the evil Government of Godswill Akpabio and his PDP. Seeing all the power that came together to try to kill John James Akpan Udoedehe, without anyone in Akwa Ibom State lifting a finger we (Justice For Akwa Ibom), reached out to the international human rights and amnesty organizations to come to our aid. We were happy that they responded and sent people to attend the court proceedings in Abuja. The authorities were trying to hold John James Akpan Udoedehe in captivity until the election was over, but when they saw the international presence, they opted to save face and pretend that there was rule of law in Nigeria. Their option was to let John James Akpan Udoedehe go a few days prior to the election and they took it.
The record of Godswill Akpabio’s unlawful deeds resides with us as we speak. If we are challenged, we will provide so much proof that will astound the world. John James Akpan Udoedehe contested the election, and the record we have shows John James Akpan Udoedehe as the winner of the 2011 Akwa Ibom State Governorship Election in Nigeria. The record also shows Godswill Akpabio as the person who rigged the election and undermined the electoral process because President Goodluck Jonathan and the PDP led federal government is bent on turning Nigeria into a one party State so that they can pocket and torture Nigerians without any challenge.
They are also conniving to interfere with the judicial system to make sure that the rights of the people are taken away. As Godswill Akpabio has stolen the mandate of the people given to John James Akpan Udoedehe, the Presidency, the Judiciary, both National Houses, the PDP – the ruling party in Nigeria for twelve years now – all want to gang up and force Godswill Akpabio on the people of Akwa Ibom State. The masses of Akwa Ibom State are helpless just like the rest of the masses of the whole country. John James Akpan Udoedehe has done what he could as an individual. Judging by the recent events in the Supreme Court on May 14, 2012, the Supreme Court has joined the fray. The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Musdapher, thought to be the remaining hope of helpless Nigerians denied of justice, just suddenly transformed into somebody else, a different personality, from what he portrayed to the world November 14, 2011, when against the ways of Nigeria, he cried out for a fair hearing in all election disputes. It is so ironic that on May 14, 2012, he became a chameleon and would rather join the Nigerian nation, as always to deny those not in government, the right to justice. He betrayed the worth of his soul and literally ruled that the case of the people of Akwa Ibom State of Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe versus Godswill Obot Akpabio in the Gubernatorial election of 2011 was dead and this without a hearing. He thereafter adjourned the case to May 31, 2012 for burial.
We, the members of Justice for Akwa Ibom Organization, judging from all the events, now demand justice. We ask for our fundamental right to a fair hearing. We understand the political game which the Supreme Court is trying to play in order to help the PDP and Godswill Akpabio’s illegal government to remain in power against the will of our people. The game is to try to play into time so that by June 2nd when the case would constitutionally expire, the Supreme Court would give an excuse and declare a force majeure, and state that the case was out of statute for time, and therefore could not be heard any more. Then Godswill Akpabio, the PDP, and the Presidency, will bring to an end the entire struggle and the hope of the people of Akwa Ibom State of being free from the evil, demonic, corrupt, and tyrannical government in place in the State now.
Therefore, we ask the Supreme Court to refrain from corruption and oppressive attempts, stop ignoring the voice of the people and save them from being kept permanently in bondage. If they have nothing to hide, the case of Akwa Ibom State between Senator John James Akpan Udoedehe versus Governor Godswill Akpabio should be heard because that is the fundamental right of all Nigerians. We have shown evidence of mega rigging in our video and we have a lot more of mind boggling proofs to show. We ask that justice be done and we, the Justice For Akwa Ibom Organization, will never back down until we obtain justice for the people of Akwa Ibom.
There is so much injustice, corruption, and insecurity in Nigeria right now because the PDP-led government will not allow the people to have a say in what is affecting them and the government keeps taking away the people’s rights, keeping them in permanent bondage. The world does not really know the true situation of the country called Nigeria. Justice for Akwa Ibom also stands for justice for Benue State and justice for all other people that are oppressed currently by the government of Nigeria under the leadership of PDP.
We, the Justice For Akwa Ibom Organization, implore all our fellow country men and women to stand up, to confront head-on the administration that is determined to break Nigeria apart. We would go to any length to make sure that justice is done for Akwa Ibom State. We have the world behind us right now. Maybe God wants to use this to expose this administration and its entire wrong doings. A nation without justice, equal rights, human rights, fairness, and equality cannot survive. So, come May 31st, 2012, we want the Supreme Court to understand that we have called on all corners to pay attention to the Nigerian Judiciary. The Supreme Court must prove on that day that they are not an appendage of the Presidency or Godswill Akpabio and the money of Akwa Ibom State he is frittering away. Hear and rule on the case fairly as he, the Chief Justice of the Country Musdapher, had ordered on November 14, 2011 that all the cases which were thrown out on technical grounds should be returned and be heard on their merits. The Supreme Court has the power to do so and give reasons later. The Supreme Court should not take away the right of the people, by not doing what is right and fair, and force them to resort to self help. If they are going to kill all the people in Akwa Ibom, that day, the people will take their destiny in their own hands. At least we will call the international press and media to televise it and maybe this will help to set the remaining people in Nigeria free. Justice for Akwa Ibom is justice for Nigeria. God bless the suffering people of Nigeria and Nigeria as a nation.
JUSTICE FOR AKWA IBOM ORGANIZATION (INTERNATIONAL)