PRESS STATEMENT BY COALITION OF FCT INDIGENOUS ASSOCIATIONS DEMANDING IMMIDIATE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE JUDGMENT DELIVERED BY COURT OF APPEAL OF NIGERIA IN A SUIT BETWEEN MUSA BABA PANYA v. PRESIDENT OF FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA AND 2 ORS. 23RD JANUARY, 2018
The entire natives of FCT under the aegis of Coalition of FCT Indigenous Associations wishes to bring to the notice of the presidency, the office of Attorney General of Federal Republic of Nigeria who doubles as the minister of Justice, the National Assembly and the general public, of the landmark judgment unanimously delivered the Honorable court of Appeal of Nigeria on Monday, the 15th of January, 2018 in an appeal brought Barr. Musa Baba Panya, with Appeal No: CA/A/412/2016, which declared as follows;
That FCT natives are entitled to ministerial representation in the Federal Executive Council as provided the combined provisions of sections 147, 299, 14(3) and 42 of the 1999 constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended.
That the persistent denial and refusal of past and current presidents to so appoint an indigene of FCT Abuja as a minister in the Federal Executive council (FEC) since May, 1999 is tantamount to a gross violation of the said constitutional right against discrimination.
That the president should with immediate effect appoint FCT native as a minister of Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The struggle and battle the FCT natives for political recognition the Federal Government four decades ago, since the creation of Abuja as the Federal Capital Territory, have yielded little or no result. The last of such struggle before this judicial victory was the move our representatives at the National Assembly to amend section 147 of the 1999 constitution as amended, to clearly make provision for ministerial slot for the good people of FCT but was rejected the lower chamber having been passed the upper chamber of the National Assembly. While we were brainstorming on the next step to take after this ugly development, the court of Appeal handed down this historic judgment and granted us a landslide victory against the Federal Government in a suit appealed one of our senior lawyer, Barr. Baba Panya Musa having lost the suit at the Federal High court in 2015.
We must say that the judiciary through the court of Appeal of Abuja Division have rekindled our hope and reaffirmed that judiciary is the last hope of common man, the executive and National Assembly in the current and pass administration since the return of democracy in Nigeria having continuously marginalized and violated our rights, especially the rights to be represented at the Federal Executive Council.
In view of the above, we urge the president of the federal Republic of Nigeria, president Mohammadu Buhari and the Attorney General of the Federation as men and leaders of integrity to obey the rule of law and implement the judgment as unanimously delivered the Justices of court of Appeal led Komolafe JCA, as failure to implement the judgment will amount to a mockery to democracy, lack of respect for Rule of Law and we will stop at nothing to involve the international bodies of which Nigeria is a signatory to.
We equally appeal to the National Assembly to invoke their legislative power with a view to ensuring that this judgment is implement the president of Nigeria.
We call on the Civil Society Organizations, notable Human Rights Activists and media organizations with a loud voice to intervene in our case so that we will reap the fruit of this judgment as we pledge our loyalty to the Federal Republic of Nigeria and will continue to explore the civil means for our agitations but we will not hesitate to react otherwise if pushed to the wall.
Thanks and God bless.
Barr. Dada Christopher
Secretary General Coalition of FCT Indigenous Associations