Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), has urged politicians to stop constantly attempting to use the judiciary as a negotiating tool to ascend to power and instead learn to accept failure during election fights.
He said, elections would soon be pointless if courts continue to select leaders for the populace, as more politicians will look to the judiciary to impose their will on the populace.
“In my own counsel, both judges and politicians, we should allow people to choose their leaders so we have less governors declared by the courts, less of legislators, less of councillors declared by the courts.
“Otherwise, everybody will seek to use that as a means to upturn the will of the people (and) election then becomes irrelevant in a choice of democracy and that is really unacceptable,” Adegboruwa said on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily programme on Tuesday.
Numerous Nigerian governors, both past and present, were elected after the Independent National Electoral Commission’s election results were overturned by a court ruling (INEC). Hope Uzodimma of Imo State and Duoye Diri of Bayelsa State are two of the governors.
Adegboruwa stated there are still many ambiguities in the Electoral Act and advocated for its reconsideration after the 2023 elections when asked if it had addressed the arbitrary way leaders are chosen by the courts.
“I think it is important for the National Assembly by now to take a second look at the Electoral Act. Yes, it is commendable, that it is an improvement upon the old one but the ambiguities created in several sections of the electoral act is enough to give us cause for concern about what we will probably witness in 2023 and beyond that period.
“But it’s probably too late now to amend the current Electoral Act before the 2023 elections because it will cause a lot of disruptions but immediately after the 2023 elections it will be important to review the electoral act and rework it,” Adegboruwa said.
Members of the Election Petition Tribunal for the 2023 general elections were sworn in by Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, the Chief Justice of the Federation (CJN), on Monday in Abuja. He also cautioned them against engaging in any sort of judicial irresponsibility.
Adegboruwa encouraged Tribunal members to carry out their duties in accordance with the established standards of professional ethics.