*To seek legal redress on banishment
*Says it’ll contribute N3m for legal team if Sanusi challenges action
By Joseph Erunke
ABUJA–THE Coalition of United Political Parties, CUPP, has condemned Monday’s dethronement and banishment of Emir Sanusi II as the as Emir of Kano by the Kano State Government.
The coalition said the action of the government was not only unconstitutional and barbaric but also an assault on the fundamental rights of the deposed emir.
To this end, it vowed to launch legal offensive to nullify banishment of the emir which it accused Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of carrying out without a court order.
CUPP, addressing the media, Tuesday, in Abuja, through its spokesman, Ikenga Ugochinyere, said it received with shock, the news of the emir’s dethronement.
“The Nigerian opposition coalition received with shock, the news of the illegal and arbitrary dethronement and purported banishment of the Emir of Kano Muhammad Sanusi II by the APC led Government of Umar Abdullahi Ganduje.
“We wish to state that the dethronement and banishment which had the tacit support of the APC-led Federal Government was barbaric, illegal, unconstitutional and a grave assault against our constitutional democracy and the fundamental rights guaranteed under sections 34,35, 36, 38, 39, 40,41, and 43 of the I999 Constitution as amended and a bold move to desecrate an ancient revered traditional institution,” it said in a prepared text read to newsmen.
The text read further: “The Emir was not given right to be heard which renders the action of the Kano State Executive Council illegal, arbitrary, unconstitutional and null and void.
“The banishment is a barbaric and mundane assault on Emir Sanusi’s human right as a Nigerian citizen provided under Sections 34, 35, 36, 38, 39, 40, 41, and 43 of the I999 Constitution as amended.
” His right to dignity of the human person,right to personal liberty, right to fair hearing, right to freedom of thought and conscience, right to freedom of expression, right to peaceful assembly and association,right to freedom of movement and right to own immovable property anywhere in Nigeria were all flagrantly violated by the Kano State Government and cannot be condoned in a democracy.
” Such nonsensical act of banishment is autocratic, dictatorial and in direct conflict with the constitution and must be resisted.
“No Governor or President has right to banish a Nigerian citizen or forcefully move him to any location in violation of right of movement, right to life and a multitude of other rights except by an order of court.
“As the opposition , we do not dabble into traditional issues but when the government’s action tends to assault our laws and intimidate citizens for speaking out, we must at all times rise to say no.
“The ancient ecclesiastical punishment of banishment and deportation cannot stand in a democracy. This much has been held by the Court of Appeal in the locus Classicus case of Government of Kehhi State vs. HRH Mustapha Jokolo, where the appellate court condemned and declared that banishment and deportation of a deposed king is unconstitutional.”
While noting that “Nigeria is still a Constitutional democracy”, the coalition said,”We are not in competition with Mugabe’s Zimbabwe, ldi Amin‘s Uganda or Nkuruzizia’s Burundi.”
“This operation destroy anybody or any institution either traditional, parliamentary and judicial that stands up to against the desires of a few incompetent people to hang on to power must be halted,” it added.
The opposition coalition said,”In view of the illegality, we urge the peoples Emir to seek redress in court to set aside this barbaric and obnoxious action for the good of the nation and others who may be silenced and treated like him.”
In the event of going to court, we have set aside the sum of N3 million only as independent contribution to his legal team to aid the redress of these obnoxious barbaric attack on our constitutional democracy and traditional institutions by gang of incompetent and shameless institution destroyers.”
“We will challenge, as a group dedicated to the promotion of democracy, the banishment proclamation in court as such is barbaric and a direct plot to enslave and hunt out of existence perceived enemies of an incompetent and corruption weakened regime that is hustling for Chinese loan to remain afloat after wasting national wealth through misappropriation and misapplication,” it added.
” Governor Ganduje and APC leaders, Kano is not Uhuru Kenyatta’s Kenya where Miguna Miguna was banished from the country and forced into a plane and was dropped in Dubai. This is not British colonial controlled Bonny Kingdom where Jaja of Opobo was deposed and exported out of his kingdom.
“Democracy and Constitutionality have brought a new dawn and ended the barbaric acts of yesterday,” it further said.