Is Sen. Hope Truly The Supreme Court Imposed Governor?

Source: Prof. Nathan Uzoma Protus

No man knows tomorrow not even Satan among the spirits can boast of understanding the future. We all believe in the theology that only God knows tomorrow this axiomatic fact is yet to be disproved philosophically no matter how we claim to have studied to know the future eschatologicaly. We are living in a moment that is both forever past, forever present and a moment that is forever in the future. This assertion is attested to by all the sacred writings of antiquity. In the Bhagavad-Gita Chapter 2:12 God says, “Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor all these kings, nor in the future shall any of us cease to be.”

The purport of the above Vedic canon authenticates the fact that in the Vedas, in the Katha Upanisad as well as in the Svetasvatara Upanisad it is said that the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the maintainer of innumerable living entities, in terms of their different situations according to individual work and reaction of work. That Supreme Personality of Godhead is also, by his plenary portions, alive in the heart of every living entity. Only saintly persons, who can see, within and without, the same Supreme Lord, can actually attain to perfect and eternal peace.

There is no doubt following the above Oriental religious philosophy that the Supreme Lord is in charge of human affairs no matter how we look at it, whether it favours us or not He is absolutely in charge. He is not man and does what pleases him. He makes no mistake at all time. To Him alone belongs justice because true justice cannot be found within corporal entities. This brings in mind the philosophical says of Longfellow that, “Man is unjust, but God is just; and finally justice triumphs.”For Socrates four things belong to a judge; to hear courteously, to answer wisely, to consider soberly, and to decide impartially.” This impartial approach has motivated me to write this article. My stand and position must be very objective in line with natural justice.

In one of the wise sayings of Confucius he says, “It is because men are prone to be partial towards those they love, unjust to those they hate, servile to those above them, and either harsh or over-indulgent to those below them in station, poverty or distress, that it is difficult to find anyone capable of forming a sound judgement with respect to the qualities of others.”The above is very obvious particularly when one relates it to Nigerian context of politics. It does appear that Nigerian politicians do not love to see good in others especially when their perceived enemy is on seat.

Let me relate this expression to the case of Gov. Hope Uzodinma. When he gained justice at the Supreme Court of Nigeria and was consequently sworn in as the executive governor of Imo State, he was automatically nicknamed “Supreme Court Governor.” This was initiated by the opposition parties in Imo State. Let me at this point state unequivocally and explicitly that one of the beauties of democracy is opposition. But I must at the same time accentuate here that in as much as we have acknowledged the fact that opposition beautifies democracy, we must practice opposition bereft of mediocrity, dichotomy and rancour. One cannot oppose the ruling party by making mess of our judicial system.

In Nigeria, the Supreme Court is composed of the Chief Justice of Nigeria and such number of justices not more than 21, appointed by the President on the recommendation of the National Judicial Council, (NJC) and subject to confirmation by the Senate. The Supreme Court is mainly a court of appellate jurisdiction and is the final appeal court in the country. The Supreme Court as the last resort tribunal and its ruling cannot be appealed. The Supreme Court of Nigeria has the final say on constitutional matters. Whatever judgement given by them cannot be faulted by any political party as we witnessed during the review of the guber case which was appealed by Rt. Hon. Ihedioha to be reviewed. The Supreme Court maintained their position as no desperation from any political interest group could compel the Supreme Court to probate and reprobate at the same time.

The court or better still, the judiciary is the last hope of the common man and its decision must be obeyed without compromise. Following the above, those of us in the PDP that were the first later became last. This is further confirmed by Jesus Christ in the Holy Book thus, “But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first” Matt. 19:30 and Matt. 20:16. In another portion of the bible Paul warned, “Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall” 1 Corinth. 10:12. There’s nothing that pains more than defeat and failure. So many factors contributed to the reason why we failed but like my personal philosophy, if one learns from his or her failure or defeat, the one has not truly lost anything. He that fails today may win tomorrow.

I do not see anything wrong in seeking justice from the court. Just like what happened in Imo PDP during primaries. Senator Samuel popularly called Samdaddy claimed he won the party’s primaries and that his mandate was stolen by Chief Ihedioha, this made him to seek justice from the lower court to the highest court and eventually Mr. Emeka Ihedioha defeated him. The victory was given to Ihedioha by the Supreme Court. The case of Amaechi and Omeha in 2007 is still very fresh in the annals of our political history. Nobody nicknamed Chief Rotomi Amaechi “Supreme Court imposed governor”.

The case of Imo State is becoming strange. Why should any right thinking man begin to make jest, banter and mockery of the Supreme Court of Nigeria? Have we lost the respect and value for everything just for political differences? I am against this not because I am in support of the APC, NO! When has political party turned to Secret Society? Does belonging to a political party means speaking “evil” of our sacred judicial institution? We must respect and value our courts and those appointed to administer justice.

I admit that in some cases, one may get judgement without justice; yes, because some times what is constitutionally right may be morally wrong. It is only in Gods own court that you can get perfect judgement, even at that, the case of Job and his wife made Job to conclude that sometimes one may not get it good always from God; he then replied his wife thus, “But he said unto her, thou speaketh as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? Shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil...?” Job 2:10. This reply may not go down well with APC and PDP. We expect it to be good always with us but when the divine wishes otherwise through the court of human justice, the parties concerned will begin to speak evil of the judiciary. That the Supreme Court ruled against any political party, should not make some people to engage in name calling. Such judgement however, does not devalue the integrity of the court and should not make political radicals and enthusiastic party faithful to negate the deference and dignity of the court.

All those calling Gov. Hope Uzodinma “Supreme Court” governor are making serious mistakes as the Supreme Court of Nigeria did what was constitutionally right and legal. If your argument is that Sen. Hope was imposed on Imolites by the Supreme Court, then you are completely wrong because the Supreme Court never rules any matter to favour any political party of their choice rather the Supreme Court rules in favour of justice using the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as yardstick. Gov. Hope got justice from God and man. He is a governor today because God approved it. He is not the governor of PDP or APC or APGA but the governor of Imo state. He deserves to be respected while we watch him unfold his action plans. Those who know me too well will attest to the fact that I detest praise singing. I speak my mind on any issue; my interest is for the good of Imo and not any political group that I belong to. I am prepared to oppose my political party if they begin to fight against the good of Imolites which i think is difficult too. At the same time, I am prepared to dig it out with Gov. Hope if his policies are anti-to the principles of good governance.

Imo belongs to us all. Gov. Hope has started very well and for now we need patience to allow him fulfil his programs. All those calling him Supreme Court governor, should refrain from such ignoble action because he was not imposed by the court. You cannot make jest of the judiciary the way we do with political parties. In the words of Confucius, “What the superior man seeks is in himself; what the small man seeks is in others.” Let us stand upright for the benefit of our noble state Imo.