Onnoghen: As Senate Files Suit to Seek Interpretation of Suspension, APC Caucus Distances Self

The All Progressives Congress (APC) caucus in the Senate on Monday said they were not part of the suit filed by the Senate at the Supreme Court, seeking the interpretation of the suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen.
This is even as Senate cancelled it emergency meeting called to discuss the suspension of Onnoghen by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Yusuph Olaniyonu, Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President of the Senate, disclosed in a statement in Abuja that the Senate has approached the Supreme Court to challenge the recent suspension of Onnoghen.
The upper legislative chamber, according to Olaniyonu, is seeking interpretation of the apex court on whether Buhari’s action is within the ambit of the Nigerian Constitution.
Reports had earlier indicated that the senators were planning to hold an emergency session over the suspension of the CJN on Tuesday.
Consequently, the session had been called off having been rendered subjudice following the filing of the case, he said.
The statement reads: “Earlier today (Monday), the Senate filed a case in the highest court of the land, the Supreme Court, seeking its interpretation on whether President Buhari acted within the provision of the constitution in his suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Hon. Justice Walter Nkannu Onnoghen .
“Or whether the action of the President does amount to usurpation of the powers of the Senate as provided for in Section 292 of the constitution.
“Following the filing of the case, the matter of the suspension of the CJN, which is the main issue for which the Senate had planned to reconvene tomorrow, has become subjudiced.
“Therefore, in line with the standing rules of the Senate not to debate issues that are already pending before the court, the reconvening of the Senate tomorrow has been put off.
“The previous adjournment of the Senate till February 19, 2019 stays’’, he said.
However, Senate Leader, Ahmed Lawan said in a statement that the APC caucus in the Senate were not aware of the said suit and would not be part of it, saying that the Senate never met to take such a resolution and at no time mandated anyone to approach the Supreme Court.
In his words: “It has come to the notice of the Senate APC caucus that the Senate has approached the Supreme Court for the interpretation of the suspension of Justice Walter Onnoghen by the President and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces.
“For the records, the Senate never met to take such resolution and at no time mandated anyone to approach the Supreme Court on this matter on its behalf.
“Consequently, the Senate APC caucus dissociates itself from the said request for the legal interpretation of the suspension.”

Author: News Editor

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