By Uche Mbah
President Muhammadu Buhari Today suspended the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onoghen, swearing in Justice Ibrahim Tanko Mohamed as the new Acting Chief Justice. Mohamed was sworn in inside the Council Chamber of Aso Rock Villa, after the signing of the Executive Order 007.
It is not clear the extent of his powers in this regard. The Constitution states Onnoghen can only be removed by two third majority of the Senate.
Since the information came in, there has been anger, particularly within the legal profession, where some lawyers fear the reign of constitutional crisis that may bring anarchy. Some claim that the Federal government is bent on causing crisis in the polity to retain power.
There has been rumors of the resignation of the CJN in the social media. He has, however, come out to debunk the rumors, saying he has not resigned.
Onnoghen has been on trial for false asset declaration at the Code of Coduct Tribunal, CCT. Three High courts, an Industrial court and an Appeal court have ruled that the Status Quo be maintained, that the CCT halt the trial, but they all appeared to be ignored.
Buhari was said to have based his suspension on an order by the CCT.
His suspension came on the heels of his swearing in judges that will handle the 2019 election petitions, fueling speculations that the presidency IS not comfortable with the list of Judges.