- The affected governors are, Dauda Lawal of Zamfara State, Abba Kabir Yusuf in Kano, and Caleb Mutfwang of Plateau State.
- At a high-level consultation on Rethinking Western Liberal Democracy in Africa, Olusegun Obasanjo criticized judges’ “cathedral pronouncements” at the Green Resort Legacy in Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Olusegun Obasanjo, the former president of Nigeria, has criticised the rulings issued by Nigerian judges on electoral disputes, stating that three to five judges shouldn’t be able to reverse choices made by millions of voters during an election.
The authority held by a small number of judges, according to Obasanjo, is “totally unacceptable.”
The former president made his remarks in response to the Court of Appeal’s ongoing rulings about the electoral disputes resulting from Nigeria’s 2023 elections.
Three governors were dismissed just last week in separate rulings rendered by the Court of Appeal judges.
Caleb Mutfwang of Plateau State, Abba Kabir Yusuf in Kano, and Dauda Lawal of Zamfara State are the governors that are impacted.
The decisions have triggered reactions, earning the judiciary more knocks than kudos.
Speaking at the high-level consultation on Rethinking Western Liberal Democracy in Africa held at Green Resort Legacy, Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Obasanjo faulted what he labelled “cathedral pronouncements” by the judges.
Obasanjo said “I believe whatever form of democracy we have or whatever system of government we have, three or four men in the judiciary should not be able to overturn the decisions of millions that have voted. Now, we have to find a way to handle that. I don’t know what the way will be but, for me, I think it’s totally unacceptable that millions (of votes), maybe 10m on one side, maybe 9million on the other side. Then, you have five people sitting down, three of them agree, two disagree. And you come up and make cathedral pronouncements that cannot be changed, I believe that should not be accepted.
“How do we do it? I don’t know. But whatever form of democracy we have, we should look at how to handle this. If you say ‘go again for election,’ then, what happened to the previous election? I don’t know.
“So, I personally feel strongly about. It does not matter what you say about the judiciary, but in fact only five people or seven will sit down. If they are five, three may agree, two may not agree, and the decision of three will be final. All that you have done comes to the decision of three or decision of four.”