As Nigerians wait anxiously for the verdict of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT), recent developments are coming together to VALIDATE the prediction that JUSTICE may not be delivered at the end of the Petition.
Before I return to the main issue of my discourse today, please PERMIT me to DIGRESS a while to the former CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele matter.
On this one, I give KUDOS to the president.
Tinubu MUST be COMMENDED for putting Emefiele behind bars.
Those saying Jagaban should not give Emefiele, the former NSA, Dasuki treatment are either part of the ENEMIES of Nigeria, or they are HIRED voices and services to make the CRIMINAL EX CBN governor look good.
Nigerians who STRIPPED themselves NAKED ASKING their banks for money they put in their care, Nigerians who DIED just because Emefiele’s CRIMINAL naira redesign policy SEIZED their hard earned cash, Nigerians who went through UNTOLD HARDSHIP during that period will CURSE anyone DEFENDING Emefiele.
What Emefiele did was FAR WORSE than what Dasuki did to Nigeria and Nigerians.
How many Nigerians know Dasuki?
On the other hand, VIRTUALLY all Nigerians, including the market women who cannot call his name correctly, have given him names; ranging from OBEWERE to EMEFIOLE to OBEFELE… lol.
So, please let us ALLOW Justice to DEAL as RUTHLESSLY as the criminal ex governor dealt with Nigerians.
Back to the matter at hand jare…
The RESIGNATION of one of the 5-member Tribunal Panel, Justice M. Ugo, hours ago has HEIGHTENED the fear that the very worst may happen to the judiciary and the final destruction of Nigeria’s democracy.
So much IMPUNITY is happening in BROAD DAYLIGHT in the conduct of governance in the country today.
First, a NON EXISTENT fuel subsidy is CLAIMED to have been REMOVED!
Less than 24 hours, fuel price is INCREASED from N185 to over N500.
Two days ago, another increase from that N500+ to N617 per liter.
Citing market forces and market realities, the NNPCL GCEO, Melee Kyari, says the price increase is inevitable.
That means before the end of the year, Nigerians WILL be BUYING fuel at N1k per liter.
It seems the best words of English that NNPCL guy loves to speak is MARKET FORCES.
Biko, which market is FORCING what price of petrol SUDDENLY!
It is obvious that there are MORE THAN THREE LEVELS of LOOTING going on in the nation’s downstream sector.
The first, is the AMOUNT of actual Crude oil sent to the foreign refineries.
The second, the ACTUAL NUMBER of DERIVATIVES being NEGOTIATED by the individuals or INTERESTS running the DSDP contract for Nigeria through NNPCL.
The third, where the sales generated go to.
Fourth, NNPCL in their agreement with its DSDP Consortia, INSISTS the Refiner BEARS ALL the COST even up till the much touted LANDING COST of fuel at the Nigerian Port; which is SUPPOSED to be the cost DIFFERENTIAL between the pump price of fuel and how much is SUPPOSEDLY SPENT in Landing the refined products at the Ports in Nigeria.
That is ACTUALLY what we have been told is the REAL FUEL SUBSIDY.
So, now that we KNOW that the Foreign Refiner bears that cost, who are the people, companies or group of persons getting the MONEY from the so called fuel subsidies biko?
Okay, so against common sense, the government takes World bank’s SENSELESS ‘ FACILITY ‘ as PALLIATIVES to cushion the impact of the NEEDLESS fuel price increase.
Government says, it will give 12 million poor families in Nigeria N8k monthly for six months; even if it is for one year, does that mean after the expiration of the SENSELESSLY ANNOYING pittance to 12 out of the over 130 million Nigerians ENDURING multi dimensional POVERTY the Beneficiaries should DIE?
Meanwhile, the National Assembly of less than a THOUSAND Nigerians, were ALLOCATED N70 billion; just for office repairs etc.
Back to the fuel subsidy SCAM; if you BELIEVE NNPCL has actually ABANDON the ABSOLUTELY stress-less, FAR MORE beneficial DSDP for some FATHOM deregulated refined products import, then you may just be the FOOL of the century.
From my CONSPIRACY THEORY oracle, I think all NNPCL has done is to use its media platforms and resources to just PROMOTE any falsehoods it wants ignorant Nigerians to BELIEVE; and CONTINUE business as usual.
Life and COST OF LIVING, as Nigerians know it today, have assumed the VERY WORST ever; across political, ethnic and religious divides.
Nigerians can no longer PAY their BILLS.
Many more are joining the over 130 million compatriots in deepening multi level, multi dimensional poverty.
Worse, is the fact that government appears to be RUNNING out of ideas , despite its policy ‘AGILITY.’
In his maiden engagement with ECOWAS and AU, the president seems to be PRE OCCUPIED with saving a democracy he is ACCUSED of destroying by his emergence as president.
Through his Lawyer at the Tribunal, he is alleged to have threatened that there will be CHAOS and ANARCHY should he be REMOVED on the basis of the constitutionally MANDATORY 25% votes in Abuja.
Don’t forget his subtle threat to the judiciary in his inaugural Democracy Day Address; when he said his government will resist any attempt to truncate democracy via court judgement.
Are you CONNECTING the dots.
Today, one of the 5-member Panel of the Tribunal resigned because, according to the HONORABLE Justice, he CANNOT be party to destroying the Judiciary to ENDORSE a KNEECAP DEMOCRACY.
So, it is OBVIOUS from the reasons Justice Ugo has given for RESIGNING from the Presidential Tribunal Panel, that ALL the members have been DIRECTLY bribed or THREATENED to deliver the WRONG JUDGEMENT!
For the records, the Plaintiffs in the Petition came with OVERWHELMING EVIDENCE and multiple witnesses; while the Respondents came with ONLY ONE Witness each.
In other words, if it were a Boxing or football game, the case is ALREADY a WALK OVER victory for the Plaintiffs.
Now, those who SEIZED the cup are trying to get the Referee to DISMISS the victory of the ACTUAL WINNERS and announce its own; which they EVIDENTLY do not deserve.
Now that Justice Ugo has gone, does this MEAN the REMAINING four Justices in the Panel have AGREED to the terms of those, Ugo REJECTED?
Does this mean, Nigerians should EXPECT a FALSE judgement?
Unfortunately, for those on the side of the Respondents, the UNENDING hardship Nigerians are being made to go through under this new government, is not only UNPRECEDENTED but UNBEARABLE!
I doubt if they want to take any more of it; should they have a better option.
For peace to reign and Nigeria to remain a UNITED country, the government should ALLOW the RULE OF LAW to PREVAIL; even if it is not in its favor.
Thankfully, president Bola Tinubu is a SEASONED democrat whose past post election resort to the Rule of Law via the courts are on record.
It is his turn to allow the Rule of Law to work.
He MUST NOT drop the ball; because Nigerians have been PUSHED BEYOND THE WALL in less than two months of his administration.
Unfortunately for him, majority of those who voted for him are GROANING under the TORTUOUS weight of his Policies.
Like every other Nigerian, CHANGING that SITUATION in any way, shape or form, has become a LIFE OR DEATH or life and death for them.
Nigerians feel HURT, BETRAYED and TAKEN for GRANTED.
How do they explain to ANYONE in the world that they don’t really KNOW their president?
How do they handle the SHAME; let alone DEFEND the many UNREFUTED ALLEGATIONS about their president’s School Certificate, Drug money forfeiture, birth certificate, and now, the ENORMOUS evidence against his victory at the Polls?
Even though they can MANAGE the ALLEGEDLY disputed source of wealth; after all, many of the world leaders too are thieves…
How do they CONTEND with the basics of identity and backgrounds of the man occupying the HIGHEST office in their country…?
…A fact that shouldn’t be an issue; even for a COMMON THIEF or the most hardened criminal…
These are the moral thorns Nigerians have to decide on, as the nation NERVOUSLY approaches the much awaited Tribunal Judgement.
Against this backdrop, the HONORABLE thing for the government to do is to do the NEEDFUL; at the APPROPRIATE time.
The deceptive GRAVEYARD PEACE being experienced in the country at the moment, is BECAUSE ‘ all eyes are on the Judiciary.’
At this moment, therefore, the nation Nigeria is an EGG in the hands of the REMAINING four justices and ultimately, the CJN, Ariwooola- led Supreme Court.
Recent social media rumors accuse Ariwoola of making his son a High Court Judge.
Is that ethical? And, at this time!
In any case, the EGG is in the hands of the Judiciary under his watch.
He MUST NOT allow it to BREAK!
Chris Otaigbe Writes From Lagos.