Umar says Buhari is pro-north, asks senate to reject any CJN nominee if not Onnoghen

Abubakar Dangiwa Umar, former military governor of Kaduna state, has urged the senate not to confirm any nominee for the position of chief justice of Nigeria (CJN) apart from Walter Onnoghen.

In November, President Muhammadu Buhari appointed Onnoghen – the most senior justice of supreme court –  as acting CJN following the retirement of Mahmoud Mohammed.

Since then, the presidency has not forwarded Onnoghen’s name to the senate for confirmation.

His three-month acting term will elapse on February 10.

In a statement on Thursday, Umar said the failure of the presidency to forward Onnoghen’s name to the senate for confirmation without any reason “leaves Nigerians guessing and speculating”.

“In a few days, the tenure of acting appointment of justice Onnoghen will expire. Going by our extant constitution, the acting CJN  will be disqualified  from appointment as the substantive CJN unless the NJC resubmit his  nomination to the president,” Umar said in a statement.

“Already, many analysts view this action as a ploy to deny a southerner his right to succession based on his seniority in keeping with the appointment protocol observed the NJC in making the appointment.

“In the event of this occurrence, the NJC must not forward any other name nor should the senate confirm any other nominee.

“This will serve to check the excesses of this administration and reinforce the unity of the nation which has already been  pushed to the precipice by the recruitment  and appointment policies of a government  which tends to favour the north in violation of the federal character provision of the constitution.”

On Tuesday, the Cross River caucus in the national assembly also asked Buhari to submit the name of Onnoghen to the senate for confirmation without “further delay”.

Source: TheCable

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