Saturday , 24 October 2020

‘Executive Order 10 will engender judicial, legislative independence’

Fomer Chief Judge of Anambra State  Prof. Peter Nnanna C. Umeadi and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Louis Alozie have praised President Muhammadu Buhari for signing Executive Order No.  10 of  2020 which grants financial autonomy  to states legislature.

In a tweet on his Twitter handle Prof. Umeadi, now a chieftain of All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) said: “With humility, I congratulate Mr  President on the bold, irreversible step to entrenching the rule of law.

“The offshoot should be obedience to decisions of courts of competent jurisdiction, whether favourable or not, and seeking appropriate redress according to law” Umeadi stated.

To Alozie,  the Executive  Order no 10 of 2020 will engender independence of the judiciary and the houses of assembly.

Alozie described the order as a welcome development.

“As  it relates  to  the  judiciary,  Section 162(9) of the  Constitution of the  Federal  Republic  of  Nigeria 1999 as  amended  provides  for  financial  autonomy of the  judiciary  by  stating that  any  amount standing to the  credit  of the  judiciary  in the  federation  account  shall  be  paid  directly to the national  judicial  council  for  disbursement  to the  heads  of court  established for the  federation and the  states  under  section 6 of the  constitution.

He lamented: “Unfortunately, this  provision  of the constitution has  been  flouted  since  the  return of  democracy in  Nigeria.

Every month, the accountants  general  of the  state  go to  Abuja  and  collect  all  the  monies  due  to both the executive, the  legislature  and the  judiciary  which they  disburse  as  it  pleases  them.

The judiciary and the  legislature  at  the  state  levels  have  been starved of funds  thereby  hampering their  operations.”

He recalled that in the  recent  past,  foremost  human  rights  activist, Olisa  Agbakoba SAN  obtained a  judgment  commanding the  enforcement  of  judicial  autonomy of the judiciary but  unfortunately  that  judgment  was  ignored.

“Now  that  the  President  has  issued the executive  order, there  is  no doubt  that  it  will  be  complied with,  so it  is  a  welcome development  even  though in a  democratic  setting  such  executive  order    would not  have  been necessary in order to obey the  constitution.

But  because  Nigerian  leaders  like  being  ordered or  coerced into  doing  the  right  thing, the  executive  order  issued  by the  President  is  a  welcome development.

“Lack of financial autonomy has rendered both the legislature and judiciary to mere stooges in the hands of the governors.

Our governors  are  completely  lawless  and have adamantly  refused to obey the  provisions  of the  constitution they  swore  to  uphold.

That accounts for some senseless laws  by the state Houses of Assembly and also some odd judgments by our courts”, he added.

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