– as CJN calls for 4 years of strict adherence to rule of law
By Gbenga Gbelee
Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo has emphasised the need for proper evaluation of
character and integrity of those elected or appointed into public offices across all tiers of
government in Nigeria.
Speaking today at the University of Lagos against the backdrop of the ‘‘rule of law and
responsive governance’’, Prof. Osinbajo equally stressed the need for the three tiers of
government to live-up to their constitutional mandate so as to ensure delivery of good
governance to the Nigerian populace.
The Vice President was the Special guest of honour at a Public Lecture of the Faculty
of Law, University of Lagos where he also advocated active citizens’ involvement in
governance devoid of ethnic, political, religious or economic colouration.
Represented by the chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences
commission (ICPC); Professor Bolaji Owasanoye, The Vice President described the rule of
law as the heartbeat of good governance, a task which he said must be vigorously pursued by
all arms of government.
Held with the theme; ‘‘The rule of Law as panacea for peace, security and good
governance in a democracy’’, the guest lecturer who is the Chief Justice of Nigeria;
Honourable Justice Walter Onnoghen took time to critically examine the indispensability of
rule of law in the pursuit of peace and security in any society.
Justice Onnoghen situated his discuss within the context of the rule of law, security, good
governance and democracy, breach of the rule of law, its implication on the quest for peace
and security and violation of human rights all as obtainable in an ideal society.
While bemoaning the failure of Nigeria to join the era of democratic consolidation as
obtainable in other African, Asian, American and Latin countries, the Chief Justice of Nigeria
stressed the need for the judiciary to resist all forms of interference from other arms of
government as a way of guaranteeing equal access to justice.
He attributed the current wave of challenges which threatens peace and security across
country to fear of the unknown and advocated a four year period of strict adherence to the
rule of law with assurances that all the challenges will fizzle away.
In his remarks, the Pro-chancellor, University of Lagos; Dr. Wale Babalakin (SAN) lauded
the Chief Justice of Nigeria and the Faculty of law of UNILAG for what he called a
thoughtful contribution in the struggle for true National cohesion and restoration of peace and
Dr. Babalakin who spoke on some of the edges of the Nigerian constitution above those of
some other countries, stressed the need for those in the legal profession to advocate for
increased funding and remuneration for the judiciary.
The 2018 public lecture according to the Vice Chancellor, University of Lagos; Prof.
Oluwatoyin Ogundipe and the Dean, Faculty of Law; Prof. Ayodele Atsenuwa was geared
towards giving the judiciary a voice in the scheme of happenings as well as building a
stronger relationship between the town and the gown.
The event which was attended by people from the legal profession across Lagos state and
beyond also served as a platform to felicitate with Professor Oluwatoyin Ogundipe as he
clocks 58 today (May 31, 2018).