The Senate had on Monday filed a suit before the Supreme Court asking for the reinstatement of the suspended CJN Justice Walter Onnoghen amongst other things.
The new suit by the Senate came in after the proposed emergency plenary session on Tuesday was canceled. The cancelation of plenary was announced by Mr. Nelson Ayewoh, the Clerk of the Senate in a statement signed by him which also did not explain the reason for cancelation.
The Senate suit marked SC.76/2019, asked the Supreme Court to declare a violation of section 292(1)(a)(i) of the constitution the suspension of Justice Onnoghen without the support of two-thirds majority of the Senate.
The suit also sought a restraining order President Buhari and Mr. Abubakar Malami, the Attorney-General of the Federation from continuous violation of the constitution and disregard of the Senate over Onnoghen’s suspension.
The suit by the Senate had three prayers as follows;
“A declaration that the suspension, by the President, of Hon. Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen from his office as Chief Justice of Nigeria on or about January 25, 2019, without an address calling for the removal, supported by two-thirds majority of the Senate is in violation of section 292(1)(a)(i) of the constitution and therefore null and void.
“An order rescinding or setting aside the suspension of Hon. Justice Walter Samuel Nkanu Onnoghen from his office as the Chief Justice of Nigeria and restoring him to the said office.
“An order restraining the defendants from continuing or repeating the violation of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and disregarding the powers of the Senate at the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
Mr. Paul Erokoro (SAN), counsel of the Senate on Monday faulted Buhari’s action. The suit argued that President Buhari could not suspend the CJN on the directive of the CCT without the support of two-thirds of the Senate.
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