Lawyers Warn Tambuwal on Defection

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Nigerian lawyers were united Sunday in condemning the speculated move by Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Aminu Tambuwal to defect from the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP to the opposition All Peoples Congress, APC.
Media reports during the week indicated that Tambuwal was set to
decamp to the opposition party alongside 15 other lawmakers to give APC the majority membership it requires to constitute the leadership of the Green Chamber of the National Assembly.
But yesterday, lawyers spoken to held that the body language of
Tambuwal so far raises questions as to whether he is a true lawmaker
or a law breaker. Most concluded that for a lawyer of his ilk,
Tambuwal ought to tread with caution.
Abuja-based lawyer, Esther Uzoma did not mince words in underscoring
the foregoing. She said; “First let me start with a quote by Niccolo
Machiavelli in his book The Prince “…men willingly change their ruler,
expecting to fare better, this expectation induces them to take up arms against him but they only deceive themselves, and they learn from experience that they have made matters worse..”
“Today the political opium that the political class is sniffing is the
illusion that the removal of GEJ will usher an utopia in Nigeria.” The
influence of this have occasioned exodus from the ruling party but
regrettably all is propelled by the need to preserve self and
consolidate their seat in power.
“Today, Hon. Tambuwal ‘s role as the beautiful bride is suspect
because he is married but finds other suitors attractive and is in
fact cavorting with them right from her husband’s house… this is
unbecoming. It is expected that the rule of law and respect for legal
processes should be obey by all particularly lawyers who are
lawmakers. Hon. Tambuwal is a man of honour; he will not do things
inimical to his reputation.
“Generally speaking, taking steps that negate or derogate from a court order is contemptuous and the law is not helpless to protect its
prophesies and oracles.”
For her colleague based in Lagos, Barrister Gerald Eguaroje, “on a
moral ground, he is in order but legally, it may be otherwise.”
Kano-based Barrister Mohammed Hassan’s reaction ended on a cautionary note. He said; “the Constitution says you cannot cross-carpet to
another party while you were elected under another political party. If you do so you will lose your sit, provided that your party has no
division in its leadership. The issue now is whether or not the PDP
has a break-up in its leadership. However we cannot conclude on
Tambuwal’s move given that there is an appeal on the case.”
The nation was taken aback in the New Year when news of Tambuwal’s
impending defection to APC broke. Not a few believed it with many
wondering if the Speaker was not aware enough on the far-reaching
implications of his defecting from the PDP given the plethora of
rulings on the matter.
For instance, the Independent National Electoral Commission in October 2013 refused to recognize the Abubakar Kawu Baraje-led faction of the Peoples Democratic Party.
The commission in a letter with reference number INEC
/LEG/PDP/19/111.25 dated October 2, 2013 and signed by the Acting
Secretary of the
Commission, U.F Usman insisted on the leadership of Alhaji Bamanga
Tukur as the authentic leadership of the National Working Committee of
the party.

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