By Lukman Olabiyi
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and rights activist, Mr. Kunle Adegoke has declared that there is no way Nigeria can develop without reviewing the constitution which he regarded as its bottleneck.
According him, for Nigeria to attain the height of developed country, it constitution must be review, and many issues such as Federal Character, Quota System, Electoral Act, Resource Control and others must be addressed.
Adegoke gave this verdict, in his appraisal of Nigeria democracy and
judiciary in the year 2020 , he noted that the current electoral act is designed to favour the winners which is harmful to democratic system.
Appraising Nigeria’s judiciary for the year 2020, Adekoge said 2020 is a challenging year in the history of Nigeria’s judiciary, especially, with the COVID-19 pandemic, adding that there is need to deploy more technology more than before to be able to face the challenge, as no one knows when the pandemic with leave.
He also called for proper funding of the judiciary, saying that for judiciary to be full independent under democratic dispensation. He said a situation where judiciary go with ‘cap in hand’, begging for funds from the executive arm of government, cannot guarantee independence of judiciary.
He also blamed lawyers with frivolous applications, which he said make it difficult for justice to be dispensed at appropriate time.
On non compliance with the court orders by the executive arm of government, Adegoke, describing such practices as executive lawlessness and a bad precedent for the country’s development.
He said, “It is simply executive lawlessness that has pervaded our system for so long. The Supreme Court had even in the past condemned such practices by the executive. Where court orders are not obeyed by an executive, such an executive is not setting good precedent for the nation’s progress, but tyranny and destruction of the system. If there’s a government that should not disobey court orders, it is supposed to be the current government led by Muhammadu Buhari.
“This is a president that had suffered a lot from judiciary in the process of determination of issues. At least, on about three or four occasions, he was in court to contest his losses at the presidential polls. He could see how long it took for those cases to be decided and how much he felt sad anytime he lost. To that extent, I expect that someone who has passed through such process would place much premium on respecting orders of court.
“The president ought to be the one that should champion the obedient of court orders. When court orders are obeyed by either the president or a governor, a good example is being set for the citizens. The citizens will behave the same way the executive behaves and that is why we have so many people around who believed they are more powerful than the court.
“The implication of all these actions is that the rule of law is being destroyed and replaced with the rule of man. The consequence of all these is chaos and anarchy”.