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The Progressives Governors Forum (PGF) under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has called on Nigerians and “lovers of democracy” to rise to the defence of democratic institutions, especially the judiciary.

The call was contained in a statement issued by its chairman, Abubakar Bagudu of Kebbi, in Abuja on Saturday.

He described as depressing, a statement by the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) proclaiming the Supreme Court judgment on Imo governorship election as a “miscarriage of justice”.

Mr Bagudu also condemned Uche Secondu’s claims that the judiciary was “heavily compromised” and had “lost credibility” over the verdict.

“These are depressing allegations coming from supposedly democratic leaders who should ordinarily be in the forefront of protecting and defending the judicial institution as the sanctuary of our democracy.

“It is contemptuous and disrespectful to our democracy,” he said.

The forum’s chairman said, “this is most unfortunate and condemnable, we call on Nigerians and all lovers of democracy in the country to rise to the defence of our democratic institutions, especially the judiciary.

“We must prevail on the PDP leadership and all politicians to exercise restraint by demonstrating unalloyed loyalty and respect for our democratic institutions, particularly our judiciary, which is the most important pillar of democratic governance.

“To allege that a judgement delivered by Supreme Court Judges is procured simply because it does not favour the PDP is an invitation to anarchy,” he said.

According to him, “it is on record that President Muhammadu Buhari has at all times stated his commitment to democracy and rule of law.”

“Our party has lost elections we thought we will win. Equally, our party has been stopped from participation in elections by the judiciary, for example in Rivers State.

“The case of Zamfara where we won the election but the Supreme Court in its wisdom nullified all our votes and declared PDP candidates as winners is another experience.

“In addition, our party members have lost many cases, and even though our views differ from the judgement delivered, we do not disparage the judiciary, yet our views of the judgement differ from the court,” he said.

Mr Bagudu said the forum declared abiding faith in the nation’s judiciary, and “would at all times respect all decisions of the courts at all levels no matter the circumstances.”

“Our party and our members believe in the sanctity of our judicial institution as the last hope for justice for our people,” he said. (NAN)

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