A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr. Rotimi Fashakin, on Monday described the Department of State Services (DSS) arrest of some senior judges in parts of the country as clinical and patriotic saying it will send a clear signal to members of Bar and Bench that the time of impunity in the judiciary is over.
Speaking in a chat with Independent, Fashakin, who was the National Publicity Secretary of the defunct Congress for Progressives Congress (CPC) also said Nigerians should commend and not criticise the DSS for carrying out a “swift, clinical and patriotic operation”.
According to him “It is one of the boldest attempt at removing the corruption that is very prevalent in the judiciary by any government, be it military or civilian. This is the boldest attempt at sending clear signals to judicial officers that the time of impunity on the bench in the name of being judges is over”.
“Nigerians really love to have a nation where justice is served in our law courts. Nigerians have loved a nation that they can call their own, where justice is not for sale. We really applaud this action by the DSS. And of course, Nigerians have been applauding the DSS for this move”.
Fashakin also lambasted the leadership of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for its statement over the invasion which he described as “very sad”.
He said “It is very unfortunate that the NBA and some past presidents of the NBA issued that statement that was at best, jaundiced, unprofessional and very provocative. I wouldn’t expect that with the caliber of men that were present at the press conference, the NBA will make that very sad statement”.
“The last time I checked, judicial officers, even the CJN does not have immunity against arrest or prosecution. So, what are these zealots really asking for? Are they trying to say that judges are immune from prosecution or arrest if they had done any wrong? Some have even gone further to stretch the position of the law as regards judicial officers’ vis-à-vis the provisions for their punishment through NJC”.
“So, does it mean that if NJC has not recommended a judge for trial, the judge can as well commit murder and will not be touched? That to me is stretching their luck too far”.
“What the DSS has done is very salutary and we should commend the DSS for a very swift, clinical and patriotic operation. I doff my hat for the leadership of the DSS” he said.
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