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South-South governors met on Sunday over Chief Justice Onnoghen’s trial. Here’s what they asked the CJN to do

South-South Governors

On Sunday, the state governors from the South-South region of Nigeria met in Abuja over the case of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen.

Four out of the six governors from the region who were present at the meeting alleged that the move to prosecute the CJN for false asset declaration infractions was vindictive and persecutory.

They further asked Justice Onnoghen not to appear today at the trial.

The Code of Conduct Tribunal had set up a three-man panel led by Justice Danladi Umar to try the CJN over the allegations against him. The trial is supposed to commence around 10:00am today at the Federal High Court in Jabi, Abuja.

Five of the governors who asked Onnoghen to ignore the trial were Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State, Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State, Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, and Ben Ayade of Cross River State.

The Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, agreed with the decision of the four governors who attended the meeting. He blamed his inability to attend on flight delays.

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However, Godwin Obaseki of Edo State who is the only All Progressives Congress (APC) governor from the South-South was absent at the meeting and did not give reasons for his failure to attend.

His absent could apparently be due to the fact that the decisions to be reached by his colleagues from the region would not be favourable to his party.

All the other five governors are members of the strongest opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

The closed-door meeting which was held at the guest house of the Bayelsa State governor in Maitama, Abuja, started around 4:00pm and ended around 7:30pm.

Meanwhile, Justice Onnoghen has vehemently denied media reports that his security aides had been withdrawn from him ahead of his trial today.

Awassam Bassey, the Special Assistant on Media to the CJN, noted that Mr. Onnoghen attended a special Sunday service for the Armed Forces Remembrance Day on Sunday and his usual security aides were with him.

Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen
Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen
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