- The senior special assistant to the president, Garba Shehu, accuses the PDP of trying to strain the relationship between the presidency and the judiciary
- Shehu denies a report that the DSS indicted the president of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa, of corruption
- The presidential media aide describes the said report as the latest sponsored campaign from the PDP aimed at causing disaffection between the executive and the judiciary
The presidency on Saturday, May 11, warned the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to stop dragging it into what it described as a sponsored media smear campaign against the president of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa.
Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant to the president in a statement obtained by Legit.ng dismissed reports that the Department of State Services (DSS) had indicted Bulkachuwa of corruption.
The presidential media aide described the said report as the latest sponsored campaign from the PDP aimed at causing disaffection between the executive and the Judiciary.
“While the PDP and its candidates are free to exercise their right to challenge the results of the 2019 presidential election, it is unacceptable to drag the name of the President or other organs of the executive branch into the campaign of character assassination against the President of the Court of Appeal, Garba Shehu said.
“The DSS doesn't conduct its duties in the manner so described and you can't use a fake security report to drag the presidency into a smear campaign against the President of the Court of Appeal."
The presidential aide said it amounts double standard and mischief for the opposition to attack judges because the outcomes of cases don't favour them and keep quiet when the verdict is in their favour.
He stated that intimidating and impugning the character of judges in order to force them to bow to blackmail is against the spirit of an independent judiciary.
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“The PDP praised the verdict of the Osun gubernatorial election tribunal because it favoured them, but they are now singing a different tune because they lost their appeal
"We cannot keep changing the definition of an independent judiciary to suit our political convenience and bias without ultimately creating chaos in the system," he said.
"If the PDP continues to blackmail and smear judges with fake news stories, we will ultimately find ourselves dealing with a situation where judges may be afraid to handle cases, thereby creating delays in the dispensation of justice."
Garba Shehu said if the presidency had any influence on election petition tribunals, APC candidates wouldn't have lost a single case before the courts.
Meanwhile, Eddy Olafeso, the national vice-chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in southwest, has said the party will go to the Supreme Court for final judgement on the 2018 Osun state governorship election.
Olafeso stated this in a statement made available to journalists during his reaction to the judgment of the Court of Appeal, Abuja that upturned the decision of the Osun state election petition tribunal, This Day reports.
Olafeso said the PDP was shocked by the Court of Appeal's decision on the matter, adding that the party will use the only option available to it by approaching the Supreme Court.
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