By Ebun Adegboruwa
The events of the past few days, in Imo and Benue States, have become worrisome, especially in relation to the attempts to subvert democratic institutions.
We have seen how policemen in Benue State, physically prevented lawmakers from gaining access to their place of work.
It was also reported that a High Court in Benue State, had issued an order of injunction, restraining the speaker of the Benue State House of Assembly, from parading himself as such.
In Imo State, it was reported that a court issued an order of injunction, restraining the Imo State House of Assembly, from proceeding with the impeachment of the Deputy Governor.
Although the events are happening so fast, it is certain that most, if not all the disputes, will end up in the law courts.
It is possible that Governor Samuel Ortom may have questions to answer on the management of the resources of Benue State, or his performance in office generally, for I remember vividly that it was this same Governor that commissioned wheels barrows, at a time. However, that has to be dealt with in accordance with due process, not with policemen barricading the Assembly to enable 8 persons in a 30 member Assembly, to purported to commence processes to impeach the Governor. The era of lawlessness and impunity, promoted by previous lawless governments, is gone forever in our history as a nation.
I cannot say whether the Deputy Governor of Imo State is an ex-convict or not, or whether or not he may be guilty of any misconduct warranting his impeachment, but once a court has issued and order of injunction restraining the Imo State House of Assembly on the impeachment, then it amounts to legislative rascality, for that House to have proceeded with the impeachment, as such is null and void and of no effect whatsoever.
I urge the Judiciary to rise up to the occasion of the cascading voices of confusion and brigandage raging in our land. Even during the military, the Judiciary played its role of stabilizing the nation. It cannot shy away from that noble role now, given the songs of war coming from all the political divides. Let Judges decide cases according to law and according to their conscience, on whose side the pendulum of truth and justice tilts, and the heavens will surely not fall.
I also urge our political leaders to consider the labours of our heroes past and the struggles of our living patriots, and give our nation the golden opportunity to practice true democracy, nurtured by the rule of law and respect for due process.
Impunity and lawlessness cannot birth true progress and development, especially when justice, equity and fair play, have taken sudden flight. It may go your way today, but sorely and certainly, it will hinder you tomorrow.
Let us keep following the constitution and the laws of our land, in all our dealings, and when we deviate, let the courts bring us back on tract, without fear, favour, affection or ill will.
God bless Nigeria.