The running story
There have been interesting developments since the last time I commented on since the DSS expose that stunned a nation that is no longer easily stunned. My only excuse for returning to it is that it is what reporter reporters call a running story. It is the biggest story in the country.
Obviously under strong pressure from the Nigerian public, the Nation Judicial Council was forced to do the right thing. It suspended the judges from office. The council lost the chance to be seen as the council of the people for the people. The council nevertheless raised a brief hope that it is possible to see equality before the law as fine face of our rule of law.
The federal government has filed a nine-count charge against one of them Mr. Justice Sylvester Nwali Ngwuta of the Supreme. The man who once wielded so much power now comes before a junior justice to answer to criminal charges of money laundering, etc. May be we should not be too hard on him. After all, he is not an ordinary accused. He is a very important accused, the like we have never seen before. I would not be hard on him. I will wait to hear what he tells the judge before whom he stands trial.
It is always pathetic to see a man who has risen so high come crashing `down into the gutter. He is not the first man to rise and fall but he is the first justice of the Supreme Court to be tried for what he had tried others for in the recent-at. Our interest in his case is hear him tell the Nigerian public how he did it and why he did it.
I hope there would be no plea bargaining with any of the seven justices. We want to see theme spread their linens in full view of the Nigerian public. Oh yes, brother we want to see how judges treat their linens.
Perhaps, the arrest of the three senior officials of the Supreme Court of Nigeria accused of not letting N2.2 into the system did not excite the public as much as the clam down on their bosses. But they have done as much to the system as their bosses. They wacked because their bossed wacked. This is the great to any system in the world. The three men saw their bosses helping themselves to the public fund and simply did the same. It is responsible for the wide spread corruption. In virtually every case of corruption and theft by junior staff the first accused are their bosses but because they were regarded as unquestionable, well, until now.
The clean up of the judiciary must be comprehensive. I believe the state invites the action of the security services. At this level corruption is quite open. Litigants must grease the palms of registers. Messengers demand something to move files from point A to point B.
The fishes in these ponds are not as big as those in the federal judicial ponds, But the sizes of these fishes matter less than they are that they too rotten from the head. Think of the consequences for the water and healthy fishes.