The Kano State government has announced its intention to file a petition against one of the judges who delivered a judgment that led to the removal of Governor Abba Yusuf at the state Governorship Election Petition Tribunal.
The judge, Justice Benson Anya, is accused of making derogatory and offensive remarks about the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) and the Kwankwasiyya political movement.
During a press briefing on Tuesday, the State Commissioner for Information, Baba Halilu Dantiye, revealed the government’s decision. He stated that Justice Benson Anya, a member of the three-person panel led by Justice Oluyemi Akintan-Osadebay, not only disrespected the people of the state by wearing a red cap but also “insulted the late Malam Aminu Kano who was the champion of wearing a red cap in Kano, and patriotic citizens of Kano State.”
Dantiye further highlighted that in addition to the general insult, Anya referred to NNPP members with derogatory terms such as “red cap wearers,” “violent and terrorist cults,” “bandits,” and “bitter losers.” This was in response to a threat against the lives of the tribunal judges issued by the former Commissioner of Land and Physical Planning, Adamu Aliyu, who was promptly dismissed by Yusuf.
The Information Commissioner expressed the state government’s concern that a judge would come to Kano and disrespect Malam Aminu Kano in such a manner. He also questioned whether Anya was justified in allowing his personal sentiments to influence the outcome of the governor’s case.
“A judge cannot just sit down because of unfounded death threats to be impartial in our judgement. This clearly showed to us that you are not being fair and just in this election verdict,” he said.
“The Nigeria Judicial Council (NJC) and other appropriate channels are there. We will file a petition against him.
“We will make sure that he pays for what he has done. We will explore all options for the unnecessary abuse.
“While we know the judgement is dead on arrival, we will not slow down in promoting the dividends of democracy to the good people of Kano State.
“Nothing will scare or slow us down. We are determined to make up all the promises made to the good people of Kano.
“As you are all aware, our legal representatives are on course to go for appeal as instructed by the Governor which we are confident of reclaiming our mandate,” Dantiye said.