Onnoghen: Danjuma, Dogonyaro, Lekwot, others accuse Buhari of religious bias

The National Christian Elders Forum on Wednesday protested against the suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen, by President Muhammadu Buhari, describing it as an Islamic agenda.

The organisation called on Nigerians to mobilise themselves to resist the Islamists in the country.

The NCEF said the President’s decision to suspend Onnoghen  was a “judicial coup.”

What was surprising, it said, remained the apparent unwillingness of Christians and other Nigerians to understand the core problem of the country.

Members of the group include Lt.Gen. Theophilus  Danjuma (retd.),  Solomon Asemota (SAN),  Prof. Joseph Otubu, Gen. Joshua Dogonyaro (retd.), Dr  Kate Okpareke, Dr Ayo Abifarin, Gen. Zamani Lekwot (retd.), Elder Moses Ihonde, Elder Nat Okoro and Elder Matthew Owojaiye.

Others are Justice Kalajine Anigbogu (retd.), Elder Shyngle Wigwe, a former Deputy Inspector-General of  Police, L. Dabup, Sir John W. Bagu, Dr Saleh Hussaini, Elder Mike Orobator, Justice James Ogebe, JSC (retd.), Dr Chukwuemeka Ezeife, Chief Debo Omotosho, Dame Priscilla Kuye, Dr S. D. Gani, Mrs Osaretin Demuren and  Prof. Yussuf Turaki.

The NCEF’s statement, which was signed by its chairman, Asemota, was titled, “CJN Onnoghen: What is really at stake and the way out.”

The group said, “In 2015, Nigerians unwittingly elected an Islamist government into office, supposedly on a platform of democracy. It is with this as background that the questionable suspension of the CJN, Justice Walter Onnoghen, should be situated. The ‘judicial coup’ is not only against the judiciary, but also the constitution that is under attack and with it, the sovereignty of the Nigerian state as a democratic nation.”

The Christian elders also restated their commitment to prayerfully support Christian presidential candidates and indeed any candidates who would be committed and loyal to the tenets of liberal democracy, human rights and equality under the law.

Asemota said the Islamists that belonged to the Salafist sect believed that modern society should run according to the 6th century pattern of Islam.

“Islamism is not a religion but a political ideology which holds that wherever Islam is, Islam must dominate,” he said.

He added, “That is one reason why Islamism is called “political Islam. However, while all Islamists are Muslims, all Muslims are not Islamists. The National Christian Elders Forum is calling on Nigerians to mobilise to resist the Islamists in Nigeria and ensure that they do not return to power again so that Nigerians can concentrate on building a just and equitable society.”

According to them, infrastructure that is sustaining Islamism in Nigeria must be dismantled and democracy must be promoted.

They stated, “In order to put an end to the recurring decimal of violence, conflicts, suspicion, distrust, insecurity, poverty and other vices plaguing Nigeria, NCEF reiterates that Nigerians should ensure that Islamists are not voted into power in 2019.” – Punch.

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