Rep. Chris Smith, ranking member of the United States House Foreign Affairs Committee’s Sub-Committee on Africa and Co-Chair of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, over the weekend cautioned the Nigerian Supreme Court ahead of today’s review of the apex court’s controversial judgement on the Imo State governorship election.
He said in a statement issued in Washington, DC: “Nearly a year ago both the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria and I sounded the warning that President Muhammadu Buhari’s suspension and removal of the then-Chief Justice and elevation of a handpicked successor threatened judicial independence and also undermined confidence that electoral disputes would be adjudicated fairly.
“Next week, the Supreme Court of Nigeria will reconsider a controversial ruling with respect to the gubernatorial election in Imo State.
“The eyes of the world are focused on whether the Supreme Court, upon reflection, will impartially adhere to Nigerian constitutional principles of federalism and the separation of power.
“If it rules with integrity, the Supreme Court can reassert its constitutional role as a firewall against unbridled federal executive power, and help preserve constitutionalism and democracy in Nigeria that is in danger of being undermined.”
The US NIGERIA LAW GROUP in a statement on Sunday in Washington, DC, welcomed Rep Smith’s intervention. It said in a statement signed by its Managing Partner Emmanuel Ogebe:
“We welcome the concern expressed by veteran human rights and democracy icon and esteemed US congressman Chris Smith on the review of the bizarre Supreme Court judgment that turned simple mathematics upside down.
“Truth, logic, the judiciary, democracy and now mathematics have been victims of ruinous misgovernment in Nigeria.
“The Buhari regime is so incompetent; they cannot properly coordinate their lies. Mr Buhari is either math-challenged, truth-challenged or both.
“In the US, he remarked during a speech that he could not be expected to treat those who voted him in with 97% (referring to the Muslim North) with those who only gave him 5% (referring to the Christian South).
“In Mr Buhari’s estimation, 97+5% make up 100%.
“There is little wonder then that Mr Buhari claims 90% of Boko Haram victims are Muslim. This is mathematically and logically implausible. On Christmas Day the Terrorists executed 11 people on video in a brutal message to the world’s Christians.
“Only one was believed to be Muslim putting the number of Christians killed that day at over 90%.
“That’s the same percentage of Christians amongst the 276 CHIBOK schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram.
“To be clear Mr Buhari is on record as having said before he became head of state that the war against terrorism was a “war against the north”. He never said Boko Haram was at war against the north. It was Nigeria and the Nigerian army that trained him in life that he accused of war against the north.
“There are no videos of Muslim clerics being beheaded just Christians.
“In this rare moment of truth from his administration that Christians are targeted, they highlight an often overlooked fact – that it is only by the grace of God and the patience of Nigeria’s Christians, that a religious war has not erupted. Mr Buhari has added to, not lessened, the prospects for civil war by his brazen religious bigotry in the operations of his government.
“It is hoped that the Supreme Court will not aid and abet Buhari in his continuing destruction of democracy as he desecrated the judiciary and legislature. Otherwise Buhari will go down in history as one who systematically destroyed democracy twice – one from without as a military dictator and secondly from within as a Trojan tyrant.
“On another note, reports reaching us indicate that the area between Babangida and Dapchi is under ferocious attack by terrorists barely a week after the 2nd anniversary of the abduction of Leah and 109 Schoolgirls.
“Christians are fleeing the area in desperation for their lives. The regime is enjoined to come to the urgent rescue.”