Onnoghen: APC Senate caucus tackles Saraki, opposes dragging Buhari to Supreme Court

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President Muhammadu Buhari and APC Senators

The All Progressives Congress (APC) caucus of the Nigerian Senate has exonerated its members from a suit seeking clarification on the suspension of Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria.

In a statement signed by Ahmed Lawan, the Senate Leader, on Monday night, the caucus said it never met to decide such.

Hours earlier, a statement by Yusuph Olaniyonu, the media aide to Senate President Bukola Saraki, announced that the Senate had filed a suit at the Supreme Court to seek legality of Mr Onnoghen’s controversial removal by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The statement also noted that the Senate had shelved a plan to meet on Tuesday to discuss the issue.

However, in a counter-statement, the APC caucus dissociated itself from the legal action.

“It has come to the notice of the Senate APC Caucus that the Senate has approached the Supreme Court for the interpretation of the suspension of Justice Walter Onnoghen by the President Commnnder-ln-Chief of the Armed Forces.

“For the records, the Senate never met to take such a resolution and at no time mandated anyone to approach the Supreme Court on this matter on its behalf.

“Consequently. the Senate APC Caucus dissociates itself from the said request for the legal interpretation of the suspension,” the statement reads.

Shortly after the caucus released the statement, the Special Assistant to Mr Saraki on New Media, Olu Onemola, insisted that the Senate leadership met to take the decision.

He wrote “Please note:

“Issues like going to court on behalf of the Senate has never been a decision taken to the floor or plenary. It is a decision for the leadership of the Senate.

“The leadership consists of 10 members.

“The Senate President got the support or consent of a very good majority of the ten on the need to seek interpretation from the apex court.”

The stance of the Senate APC caucus came about 24 hours after the caucus met with President Buhari in Abuja. Details of what was discussed was not made public.

THE SUSPENSION

Mr Buhari suspended Mr Onnoghen on Friday based on an order of the Code of Conduct Tribunal.

Many Nigerians including the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), however, opposed the suspension saying the president has no constitutional powers to suspend the CJN, who heads the judiciary.

The NBA has already called for a boycott of courts across Nigeria on Tuesday and Wednesday to protest the decision.

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