From Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja
A group of lawyers, Judicial Integrity Lawyers (JILAW), has cautioned aggrieved politicians against instigating crises following the outcome of the 2023 general election.
The coalition, comprising over 250 constitutional and human rights lawyers, urged politicians and political parties to seek judicial redress in line with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution.
JILAW issued the cautionary statement at the end of its annual conference in Abuja, which had the theme “Democracy and the Rule of Law”.
The statement, read by the coalition’s president, Idoko Godwin, warned that any resort to self-help by politicians would be a negation of the constitution.
The coalition stressed that politicians should not sponsor crises across the nation to demonstrate their grievances as it would contradict the supremacy clause of the 1999 Constitution. It advised all aggrieved individuals and groups to give total consideration to Section 1(2) of the 1999 Constitution and seek judicial redress as enshrined in the constitution.
The coalition also expressed disappointment at the disregard for court orders by top government officials and called on President Muhammadu Buhari to address the issue and impose appropriate sanctions for violators of the dictates of the constitution.
JILAW warned that the continued disregard for Nigeria’s judiciary and disobedience to the country’s laws would lead the country towards anarchy.
According to the statement, “the implications of the continued disregard for Nigeria’s Judiciary and disobedience to our laws, are beyond individual victims or the integrity of these agencies. Both at home and abroad, this badge of shame stains our collective national consciousness and makes a daily mockery of Nigerian laws…We are stating that a country that has no regard for the decisions of its court is heading toward anarchy.”