The Kano State government has announced its intention to file a formal complaint against Justice Benson Anya, one of the judges on the Kano Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, due to his controversial remarks concerning the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) and the Kwankwasiyya political movement,Daily Trust reports.
Last week, the tribunal ruled unanimously to remove Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf of the NNPP from office, with the judgment delivered by Justice Oluyemi Akintan-Osadebay, the chairman of the three-member panel. In his concurring judgment, Justice Anya made comments critical of Governor Yusuf’s administration, alleging support for anarchy and allowing government agents to disparage the judiciary. He also used derogatory terms to describe NNPP members, referring to them as “red cap wearers,” “violent and terrorist cults,” “bandits,” and “bitter losers” in response to a perceived threat against the tribunal judges.
The State Commissioner for Information, Baba Halilu Dantiye, speaking on behalf of the state government, condemned Justice Anya’s comments, noting that they not only insulted those who wear red caps but also dishonored the memory of the late Malam Aminu Kano, a prominent figure known for wearing a red cap in Kano, and the patriotic citizens of the state.
Dantiye emphasized the government’s determination to pursue all available avenues to address the judge’s unwarranted remarks, asserting that the judgment was baseless. He stated that the government’s legal team was already in the process of filing an appeal to contest the ruling, expressing confidence in reclaiming their mandate.
Furthermore, Dantiye highlighted the government’s interest in investigating whether Justice Anya was justified in making such personal comments that influenced the election verdict. He mentioned that the Nigeria Judicial Council (NJC) and other appropriate channels would be involved in the process, and a formal petition against the judge would be filed.
Dantiye concluded by criticizing the judge for potentially compromising his impartiality due to perceived threats, asserting that this behavior indicated a lack of fairness and justice in the election verdict.