The Supreme Court has discountenanced claims by the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) that plans were afoot to influence the appointment of justices for the Presidential Election Appeal Panel.
The apex court described CUPP’s claims as a campiagn of calumny, adding that it was a blatant falsehood, misinformation and a malicious rumour.
Festus Akande, Supreme Court’s Director of Press and Information, said in a statement released on Monday in Abuja, that CUPP is not and can never constitute itself into an agency of the Nigerian judiciary or assume the role of an alternate Supreme Court of Nigeria.
“Let it be known that the Supreme Court is not an assemblage of individuals with no defined purpose, vision and modus operandi. Our operations are strictly guided by the constitution and extant laws. ‘`We are not an appendage of any individual or group of people, and we don’t pander to the dictates of anybody or association’’, Akande added.
According to him, the Supreme Court is an independent arm of government that can never be intimidated or dictated to by anybody. “We should be mindful of our utterances to avoid inflicting a devastating harm on the nation”, he stressed.
The Supreme Court said it has been entertaining presidential election appeals over the decades but the unnecessary hysteria and superlative drama being woven around this particular one calls for caution and moderation.
“The constitution of any panel to sit on a matter in the court is the sole prerogative of the Supreme Court and it is never an issue for the court to debate on the television or pages of newspapers. We are not a political party or social club and should never be dragged into any form of baseless pedestrian discussions that will drive valid reasoning aground’’.
Spokesman of CUPP, Ikenga Ugochinyere, while addressing newsmen on October had alleged “that plans were underway to manipulate the panel of Supreme Court justices to decide the appeal filed by the People’s Democratic Party’s candidate, Atiku Abubakar.
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