Yetunde Oladejo, Osogbo
A civil society group in Osun state, the Civil Societies Coalition for the Emancipation of Osun State (CSCEOS), has written President Muhammadu Buhari calling for independent investigation, by the presidency, into the compulsory retirement to a High Court Judge, Justice Olamide Folahanmi Oloyede, by the National Judicial Council (NJC).
The group also sent the same letter to the leadership of the National Assembly, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, the Executive Secretary of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) among others, asking them to conduct thorough and unbiased inquiry on the matter.
It would be recalled that NJC had barely two months ago, handed down recommendation of compulsory retirement of Justice Oloyede, for allegedly daring to write a petition to the State House of Assembly where she called for thorough and credible investigation into the alleged criminal mismanagement of public funds by the State governor, Rauf Aregbesola.
CSCEOS also sought for the intervention of eminent Nigerians in the injustice meted out to the jurist, noting that the NJC decision cannot survive the test of the time adding that the group had concluded arrangement to deploy all democratic means to attain justice on the issue.
It then demanded that Buhari sets up an independent panel of inquiry to investigate the rationale behind the sudden “change of Code of Conduct for Judicial officers”, after the proceedings of Justice Auta’s Panel in 2016 when the 2014 Code of Conduct for judicial officers were still subsisting, saying that this was where it suspected foul play against Justice Oloyede.
The group insisted that it would not accept any verdict from the NJC with the new rule used to remove Justice Oloyede from the bench which it described as illegal, unconstitutional, barbaric, undemocratic, evil and ungodly.
These were contained in a Petition letter dated 15th September, 2016, titled, “Reports of Miscarriage of Justice against the Courageous and Incorruptible Justice Olamide Folahanmi Oloyede of Osun State High Court by the National Judicial Council (NJC). Why CSCEOS is calling for thorough, credible, independent and unbiased investigation by President Muhammadu Buhari” and signed by the CSCEOS’ Chairman and Assistant General Secretary, Comrade Adeniyi, Alimi Sulaiman and Comrade Sola Olojede respectively.
The said petition made available to journalists in Osogbo on Tuesday contained the heaps of convincing evidences which was attached and forwarded to President Buhari, claiming that its petition letter remained a valuable leads to unravel this miscarriage of justice against incorruptible Justice Oloyede.
CSCEOS stated that as a responsive and responsible Civil Society Organization(CSO) in the land, it took the organization some time to analyze, investigate and authenticate the facts at its disposals on the matter before commencing this fresh action to seek redress on the subject matter, declaring that no amount of intimidation from Mr. Rauf Aregbesola and his cronies, would stop the group in its quest for just and prosperous Osun State, insisting that it would continue to put the present administration on its toes in the interest of the people of the State.
The group in the petition alleged a foul play saying, “It is also imperative to inform your good office that some elements in the Presidency, especially, the office of the Vice-President was in collaboration with NJC leadership to ensure that the incorruptible Justice Oloyede’s exit from the bench of Osun State because of her incorruptible rising profile in the judicial arm of government by formulating new hidden 2016 Rules to justify this nefarious recommendation as against August 31st ,2105, NJC Published “2014 Judicial Discipline Regulations” which was subsisted throughout the period during which Justice Ibrahim N. Auta led NJC Panel between January 25, 2016 to April, 2016 heard the matter.
“We will like to also inform your humble self that there are few elements who are working round the clock to ensure that your administration will be seen as a government which does not respect the rules of the land, opinion of whistle blowers and lawless government before the local and international community”.