A legal practitioner, Mr Kayode Ajulo, in his remarks toed the path of the Appeal Court, but also warned that Justice Abang should not turn himself to “a notorious judge.”
Ajulo said: “It is elementary law that when the Appeal Court sits on a matter, the lower courts or the trial courts ought to hands-off the case. If a judge chooses to do otherwise, I believe he is on his own; he is on a voyage of no return and there is law and procedure to deal with such errant judge.
“As a lawyer, I am not in a position to castigate Justice Abang, what I need to do is to concur with the Court of Appeal. Why we should obey the law is because those who disobey the law, should be sanctioned. I am afraid that Justice Abang should not turn himself to a notorious judge.”
On his part, Chief Emeka Ngige,SAN, averred that the issue may possibly get to the Supreme Court, where the apex court would adjudicate as it deems suitable.
He said: “The matter is likely to get to the Supreme Court. At the end, the court would take decision in its wisdom”.
In his reaction, Human Rights activist and Constitutional Lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, said the pronouncement of the Appeal Court has vindicated him, adding that it was evident that Justice Abang placed the law on its head and he somersaulted.
He also said every judgement given by Justice Abang on the Abia State case was a somersault and constitutionally an abberation and a great disservice to the judicial process.
He stated: “Ordinary people on the street have been accosting me and asking why do Justices behave like that and I said I do not know. The truth is that the entire judgement on the Abia case was wrong. It dislodged logic and law. The judgment did not take cognisance of the fact that every affidavit says I swear as follows and you end it by saying I swear to this affidavit conspicously and faithfully which means everything you swear is true and correct.
“Even if a fake or incorrect tax clearance had been given to the taxpayer and you attach it to your form CS001 which is the form you fill for governorship, how does that concern you and how do you question the tax office over the documents they gave?
“How do you say because the tax clearance was issued on a Saturday, it means that is was fake. How does Justice Abang say Saturday is a public holiday when the public holiday act in Nigeria specified that public holidays are on Christmas day, New year day, Independence day and May day, otherwise all other days are working days and which is why tribunals sit on Saturdays and elections are also conducted on Saturdays and Sundays,” he stressed.
He further said: “What Justice Abang should have done when they brought the case before him was to wash his hands off the case like Pontius Pilate. In all ramifications, every section of that judgement was a great disservice to law.”
and I am happy the Court of Appeal has set it aside and I expect the Supreme Court to do same”.