Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee against Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay, has dismissed the call for Transport Minister Rotimi Amaechi to step down as “malicious and vindictive,” stating that it should be ignored.
The remark is contained in a statement he issued on Thursday in his personal capacity in response to frequent press inquiries concerning statements credited to Justices Sylvester Ngwuta and John Okoro of the Supreme Court in which they claimed Amaechi once tried to induce them to favor the APC in an election petition.
The claims by the judges, who face serious corruption allegations, followed their arrest last month by the DSS.
“This outburst by the two Justices is surprising, considering that it is totally unrelated to be raids of their premises, their arrest and subsequent charges before our Courts. Men of that status should not indulge in such diversionary activities in the midst of grave and ominous charges facing them,” Professor Sagay declared. “I would have thought that they would use the time at their disposal to prepare their defences against the serious charges they are facing.”
He added that given their statuses as Supreme Court Justices, even in the middle of the adversity confronting them, they should not have engaged in a distraction totally incompatible with the dignity and respect that their high offices attract.
He stressed that it was demeaning for the two judges to abandon their legitimate defence to smear a high official of the Buhari government they probably consider to be the source of their predicaments.
“Mere allegations cannot have enough weight to affect the position of such a high official as Amaechi, otherwise knowing the disposition of Nigerians for putting people down, no office holder will be safe in this country,” Sagay said. “It is therefore improper and ridiculous to compare the position of the Justices in whose houses millions of naira and hundreds of thousands of dollars were recovered, to that of Amaechi against whom there is only the mere ipse dixit of the Judges.”
He noted that the “sudden anti-Amaechi narrative” was consistent with the objectives and interests of the chief promoters and funders of judicial corruption during election petitions.
“These powerful opposition politicians are well known. To be more specific, they are from Rivers and Akwa-Ibom States. They are the ones who financed judicial corruptions and brought that great institution, the Judiciary, to its knees, after the 2015 elections.”
According to Sagay, the allegations being made by the justices are intended to undermine and weaken the Buhari Federal Government, by depriving it of the service, input, ideas and productivity of some of its brightest stars, thereby setting the stage for charging the government with ineffectiveness and cluelessness.
“In other words, it is an attempt to reduce the image and perception of this Federal Government to the low level of their own late and unlamented government,” he declared.
“Therefore, the call for Amaechi to step down is malicious and vindictive. It should be ignored with complete ignominy,” he added.
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