The Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) has explained that the Federal Government had the right to keep the former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki and convener of #RevolutionNow, Omoyele Sowore despite court orders.
Malami disclosed this when he appeared on ‘Good Morning Nigeria’, a programme of the NTA on Thursday.
The AGF said the orders of the court were subject to applications for variation and appeals at the Court of Appeal, explaining that the enforcement of the orders could be delayed in such circumstances.
He said this applied in the cases of Dasuki and Sowore, adding that “there were applications for setting aside orders; there were appeals for a stay of execution all through. So, until those matters reach the Supreme Court and it takes the final decision, relating there, you are still operating within the ambit and context of rule of law.”
The AGF further stressed the need for Nigerians to understand the judicial process and that not all court orders are to be obeyed immediately.
“Perhaps, I need to clear the air on how the rule of law operates within the context of the Nigerian constitution. We have multiple and a plethora of judicial decisions that establishes a fact that when you are challenging a court order through a judicial process, the idea of disobedience to that court order does not arise,” he said.
Malami added that: “The misapprehension that set into the system and deliberately put in the public space is the fact that once there is a court order, you must unconditionally comply.
You can only be adjudged being in disobedience of a court order when you don’t take advantage of the constitutional powers, rights accorded to you by appealing against the order and perhaps, seeking for stay of execution of the order or perhaps, you don’t take any steps seeking variation of the court order.”