Retired President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Mustapha Akanbi, yesterday added his voice to the debate surrounding the suspension of Sanusi Lamido Sanusi as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, saying President Goodluck Jonathan’s action was pre-emptive and ill-advised.
The respected jurist in his reaction to Thursday’s suspension of Sanusi said that, “All I know is that the point has been made that CBN’s governor cannot be removed from office without taking the matter to the Senate for two- third of the Senators’ vote. And there is no provision in the Constitution which I know of that allows the president to suspend him.
“If the president wants him out of office he should follow due process and we cannot resist the temptation that apparently because Sanusi was complaining about what has happened at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), he is now made to face this situation.
“I think it is not in the interest of the president or the country to go through the whole process we went through in the case of Justice Ayo Isa Salami. Because there seems to be some parallel between this and Justice Salami’s in terms of suspension.
“I would have thought that the president, who people say wants a second term, should be careful in listening to advice or acting in a manner that could heat up the polity; or creating an impression that he is beyond criticism. Robust criticisms of government can help.
“I have read what Ladi Williams said, that Sanusi’s action is tantamount to insubordination. He is certainly not talking law. I have read what the like of Aturu have said; people who rarely concern themselves with the rights of the people in government.
“I think any lawyer would want the rule of law to be followed. In my opinion, that rule has not been followed and the President or his advisers should do a rethink over the issue. After all Sanusi is going in June this year”, the pioneer chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) said.