Buhari Sticks To Tradition, Ignores Supreme Court Order On Naira Swap

Buhari Sticks To Tradition, Ignores Supreme Court Order On Naira Swap

President Muhammadu Buhari has again acted true to the tradition of disobeying lawful court orders by ignoring the Supreme Court order stopping the Central Bank of Nigeria from phasing out a certain denomination of the Nigerian currency, the naira.

Speaking in a nationwide broadcast on Thursday, the president harped on the need to sustain the policy which he said has helped in curbing insecurity and to lay a better foundation for the future of the country.

The Supreme Court had last week granted an order ex parte that the CBN must halt the new monetary policy until all parties make their case before it.

The Court made a similar pronouncement on Wednesday when it adjourned the case to February 22, as more states joined Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara states in the suit against the federal government.

While it was widely expected that the president would grant a general extension, which would have been in line with the order of the Supreme Court, he chose the contrary.

Since the birth of his administration, Buhari has disobeyed the court decisions on at least 40 occasions according to findings by THE WHISTLER.

This is in addition to today’s disobedience which has made it at least 41 different occasions.

One notable case was the judgment by the ECOWAS Court of Justice in Abuja, which awarded N30 million as compensation for the ill-treatment of journalist Agba Jalingo, who faced trumped-up and politically motivated charges of treason.

The Buhari administration has also ignored the judgment by Honourable Justice Hadiza Rabiu Shagari delivered on 5 July, 2017 ordering the federal government to tell Nigerians about the stolen asset it allegedly recovered, with details of the amounts recovered.

There is also a second judgment, by Hon. Justice Mohammed Idris, on 26 February, 2016, which ordered the federal government to publish details on the spending of stolen funds recovered by successive governments since the return of democracy in 1999.

Also Hon. Justice Oguntoyinbo on 26 November, 2019 ordered the federal government to challenge the legality of states’ pension laws permitting former governors now serving as ministers and members of the National Assembly to collect such pensions, and to recover pensions already collected by them.

On 28 May 2018 Hon. Justice Mohammed Idris ordered the Federal Government to prosecute senior lawmakers suspected of padding and stealing N481 billion from the 2016 budget.

The court also ordered that the federal government widely publish the report of investigations into the alleged padding of the 2016 budget.

THe WHISTLER can also report that Hon. Justice Obiozor, on 4 July 2019 ordered the Federal Government to publish the names of companies and contractors who collected public funds since 1999 but failed to execute any electricity projects.

On 19 November, 2009, there was a judgment, by the ECOWAS Court of Justice in Abuja, ordering the government to provide free and quality education to all Nigerian children without discrimination.

One notable case was the case of the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, who was facing multiple charges for alleged diversion of $2.1 billion and illegal possession of firearms during the administration of Goodluck Jonathan.

Dasuki was granted bail on at least six different occasions by various courts, but was not released.

A Federal High Court in Abuja, presided over by Justice Adeniyi Ademola in 2015 ordered the release of Dasuki’s passport and granted him permission to travel abroad for three weeks on medical grounds.

Dasuki approached a Court of the Economic Community of West Africa, ECOWAS, for international mediation on the matter after the order was ignored

The ECOWAS court on October 4, 2016 granted the former NSA bail and ordered the Nigerian government to pay N15 million to him.

The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court reaffirmed previous court orders granting Dasuki bail, just like the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court affirmed again that he be released on bail.

Another high profile case was that of Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, a leader of a Shiite group, IMN.

On December 2, 2016 the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court ordered his release but the order was flouted.

The presiding judge, Gabriel Kolawole, also asked that a fine of N50 million be paid to the detainees, which included Mrs El-Zakzaky while an accommodation be provided for them and their family.

The Buahri administration has also flouted a judgement of the Supreme Court made in July 2016 giving an order reaffirming the nullification of the 2006 controversial transfer of the Aluminium Smelter Company of Nigeria, ALSCON, to a Russian firm, the United Company RUSAL.

But speaking on Thursday, Buhari argued that “strengthening our economy, enhancing security and blockage of leakages associated with illicit financial flows remain top priority of our administration,” which require that the new monetary policy stays but with partial freeing of the N200 old notes.

He assured that he remains “committed to my oath of protecting and advancing the interest of Nigerians and the nation, at all times,” giving a pronouncement that, “for a smooth transition, I similarly approved that the redesigned banknotes should circulate concurrently with the old bank notes, till 31 January 2023, before the old notes, cease to be legal tender.”

The president added that the old notes of N500 and N1000 remain illegal tenders in line with the CBN act in flagrant disobedience to the Supreme Court which ordered a maintenance of status quo.


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