A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and former National Publicity Secretary of the defunct New People’s Democratic Party (nPDP), Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, wants judges to be wary of taking up feats organized by Gov Nyesom Wike of Rivers State. He has also taken a swipe at Wike over the feast he had for the outgoing President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Adamu Bulkachuwa.
In a statement made available to media houses, Chief Eze described the event as an ‘unsolicited jamboree, fanfare, and squandermania targeted at robbing Rivers people the dividends of their God-given resources and good governance.’
He said; “Sadly and unfortunately Gov Wike could embark on such unsolicited jamboree while the salaries and pensions to civil servant and pensioners are kept in the cool. This act is nothing but exhibition of corruption in the Executive arm of the government of Rivers State as highlighted by Governor Wike.
Eze warned judges to know that most Nigerians know the strong link between Gov Wike and most judges, and that he is allegedly seen as the bridge between his party and judges. “The judges must know that this perception, wrong or right, is very strong in the social sphere and in the polity.”
According to the party stalwart, “There is nothing wrong in organising a banquet, especially for Justice Bulkachhwa, but there was never a time the Hon. Justice supplicated for one. There is more to the event than meets the eyes, coming from a political desperately and an interloper, lacking in sincerity”. He warned the judges to know that Wike as a man is someone who does not put cash on any enterprise without definite benefit. He said they must remember that when electoral officers told him how difficult the task he gave them to do was, that he ordered them to be prepared to refund his money.
Eze said the Governor must be hiding under the masthead of “a State Banquet”, but that it is a gimmick to achieve some dishonest purposes. He however expressed optimism that the Governor’s voyage will turn out futile.
Recall that the outgoing President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Bulkachuwa, was in Port Harcourt a week ago as part of the processes for her bowing out, having attained the retirement age of 70.
In the statement, Chief Eze congratulated the retiring Justice and commended her for serving the country meritoriously. However, Eze cautioned judicial officers to “be sober and vigilant, because your adversary walks about seeking whom he may devour”.
He said, “Judicial officers must be wary of being inveigled into a situation in which they find themselves becoming partisan agents of Gov. Wike, who has conscripted himself into an arch enemy of justice, in the pursuit of his selfish schemes and private vendetta.
Eze’s counsel that judicial officers should do their best to distance themselves from politicians like Gov Wike is predicated on the governor’s boast that he won his case at the Supreme Court in the 2015 gubernatorial election because a particular political leader from Rivers State always tells him (Wike) who to meet in the Judiciary and he obeys and that won him his Supreme Court case.
Eze maintained that any Judicial officer both retiring and in active service who wants to keep his integrity intact must as a matter of fact, maintain a very long distance from Governor Wike, because he is capable of corrupting and damaging any decent and sane leader.
“Nigerians are fully aware that the APC and other political opposition parties in Rivers State have been receiving undue and negative results from judges and we wish that this particular hosting is not to show a thank you act for a job well done.
“Today, courts continue to grant unjustifiable injunctions against Rivers APC from holding its congresses in order to elect officers to conduct its affairs in the State. Conducting congresses is an internal affair of political parties, but some desperate politicians who hate opposition use the courts to keep APC Chapter in Rivers State in a perpetual coma.
“For Gov Wike to state that the Executive and Legislative arms of Government are far more corrupt than the Judiciary, but that they are the arms that criticise the Judiciary all the time, is an invitation to the Chief Justice of the Federation to investigate and find out from Wike the extent of corruption in the Judiciary and arrest it because a corrupt Judiciary is dangerous and cancerous to our nascent democracy.”
Chief Eze warned that Gov Wike uses a gathering of judges to arrange things and seal deals, as well as appoint next set of contacts in the Judiciary. This is why the retiring Bulkachuwa and all the judges that attended the tainted feast should be very cautious because the world is watching. Gov Wike’s antics cannot be disguised forever.”