The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has demanded an apology from Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai over his comments on the National Industrial Court.
Last week, El-Rufai said one of the biggest mistakes Nigeria made was setting up the National Industrial Court, citing instances where the court freed people accused of corruption.
Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s The 2023 Verdict, NBA President, Yakubu Maiyaku, said it is wrong for El-Rufai to have made such comments.
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He described the governor’s comments as one that has the potential to incite the public against the Nigerian judiciary.
Should El-Rufai refuse to apologise to the judiciary, Maiyaku said the legal body will not hesitate to slam a legal case against him in court.
“For El-Rufai to say that we made a mistake in creating the National Industrial Court under the Constitution, is the office of the governor not the creation of the Constitution?” he questioned.
“Are we all happy with what the governors have done? Certainly not. Does that mean that we made a mistake in creating the office of the governor under the constitution? No. So you cannot seat there and expect to do things according to your whims and caprices and expect the court to simply align with it because you are the government.
“The court is not to align with anybody. The court is to sit down, look at the fact presented before it and render a decision one way or the other. It is wrong for him to have said that. We will demand of him to apologise to the judiciary because he is inciting the public against the judiciary. If he doesn’t, we will take out a court action against him by May 30.”
The NBA President also urged Nigerians to report cases of corrupt judicial officers with evidence to buttress their allegation.
Admitting that there are some bad eggs in the bar and bench, he insisted that judiciary is not as corrupt as many people think.
He added, “Just as we do have in the bar people that misconduct themselves, there are people also on the bench that misconduct themselves and we say that whenever you have evidence, please let us know.
“The vigour with which we go out to protect the judiciary, if we find evidence, we will apply the say effervescence in dealing with whoever it is that you have found to have misconduct.”