Oladele condemns Atiku's former spokesman, Sowunmi acts of intimidation, bullying against the judiciary ...Says the act will not promote Atiku's cause
By Adetokunbo FAKEYE
Nigeria - A chieftain of All Progressives Congress, APC, in Ogun State, Hon. Kayode Oladele has warned aides of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential candidate in the last general election, Alhaji Abubakar Atiku against act of intimidation and bullying of the judiciary.
The warning was as a reaction to Mr Segum Sowunmi's interview with AIT television last weekend, where he stated that the party Presidential candidate in the last election, Alhaji Abubakar Atiku only opted to follow the rule of law in spite of other options available to him to seek redress for his election loss.
According to him in the AIT monitored interview, there were many other options which the defeated PDP presidential candidate could have pursued but he chose to follow the rule of law by filing his petition before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
Hon. Oladele, an international human rights lawyer, and former Chairman, Financial Committee of the House of Representatives in a press interview described Mr. Sowunmi’s statement on AIT as an "act of intimidation and cyber bullying. I can only consider it as a sad joke, ludicrous, ridiculous, absurd and unacceptable in a democratic society", he stated.
He stated further that to an average person, the statement has damaged and disparaged Atiku’s reputation than might have been intended by Mr. Sowunmi in that the insinuations and innuendos from the interview is that Atiku is capable of resorting to extra constitutional remedies such as violence, terrorism, civil disorder and other physical forces or acts of war in pursuit of his grievances after his election loss but he was only magnanimous enough to toe the line of civility, law and order by filing his petition before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
He said: "As a lawyer, my immediate reaction was whether Segun, whom I regard so much actually said what he was quoted as saying, whether he knew the implications of his outburst and whether he was aware that what he said has the semblance of intimidation of the judiciary, violation and infraction of the rule of law and democracy which he has defended over the years.
"Anyhow and whatever his opinion is, I believe that Nigeria is not a banana republic and nobody can intimidate the judiciary or threaten the corporate existence of the country just because of a failed personal ambition. Nigeria is a country of peace, law and order.
"Even though, our democracy is nascent, the rule of law and the independence of judiciary is very critical, central and fundamental to its advancement, growth and development.
"The big question really is what other option could he (Atiku) have taken as a democrat and as someone who has been a critical advocate and stakeholder in Nigeria’s democratic process for many years?
"Nigeria is a democratic state and it is everyone’s civic responsibility to ensure that the law of the land is respected without regard to whose ox is gored".
In conclusion, Oladele warns Alhaji Atiku’s aides to stop all acts of intimidation and bullying against the judiciary, noting further that Nigeria has one of the most courageous, vibrant and fearless judges in the world.
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