A forum of 50 non-governmental organisations, has called on allegedly corrupt judges recently arrested by the Department of State Security (DSS) to step down from their posts immediately.
Chairman of the Forum for Non-Governmental Organisations in Nigeria (FONGON), Mr Wole Badmus, made the call on Monday in Abuja at a news briefing.
Badmus said that the call became necessary because the National Judicial Council (NJC) has refused to suspend the indicted judges and justices as expected.
According to him, the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA)’s opposition to the arrest of the judges on corruption charges is based on selfish interest.
He said that though they had not been declared guilty by any court of law, the judges had been tainted in the court of public opinion.
Badmus added that the positions of the judges were no longer tenable until they had cleared the allegations against them.
He stated that if the affected judges and justices failed to step down, the forum would mobilise Nigerians to besiege their courts until they heeded public opinion.
He added that the forum which comprised 50 Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) would also embark on a peaceful demonstration to support Federal Government`s efforts to rid the judiciary of bad eggs.
The chairman threatened that the forum would ground the judicial system if the judges accused of large scale bribery were not prosecuted.
“We want to say that this is not President Mohammadu Buhari`s war, neither is it a war of any political party; it is a war of all Nigerians.
“We call on Nigerians not to allow themselves to be misled by those who have constituted themselves into stumbling blocks against this war.’’
He urged the Federal Government to continue to take the lead in the prosecution of the battle against corruption in the judiciary, in particular, and the polity in general.
He, however, decried the continued silence of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NUC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) and other groups on the issue.
According to Badmus, this is one moment when silence should not be seen as golden; all hands should be on deck to fight corruption in the country.
He also called on the Federal Government to call to order, the governors of Rivers and Ekiti state, who according to him, have been using their immunities to obstruct the course of justice.
He also said that disciplinary actions should be taken against law enforcement agents who colluded with the governors to thwart justice.