Law and Politics of impeachment in Nigeria: interrogating the basis of judicial control of a political process

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Centerpoint Journal of Humanity Edition, Unilorin Library Publication


Contrary to the widespread perception, the widely-acclaimed change in attitudes of the Nigerian courts towards the political process of impeachment is not a product of any material differences in the texts of the provisions of the 1979 and the current 1999 Constitutions. Rather, the shift from complete detachment to measured intervention in the legislature's exercise of its constitutional powers to remove chief executives of government was a policy somersault by a judiciary that risks being consigned to irrelevance in the face of growing and wanton disregard for due process by the political organs of government in the discharge of their constitutional duties. While the paper canvasses judicial enforcement of constitutionally sanctioned obligations for sustenance of a democratic system under the rule of law, the authors concluded that the political character of impeachment proceedings necessarily foists on the judiciary the need to exercise caution and ensure that it's interventionist policy does not draw it into an arena it is least fit to operate.


the paper examines the constitutional power of the legislature to impeach an executive and the ground on which judiciary can intervene. this because of the principle of separation of power which disallow an arm of government interfering the business of the other.


impeachment, politics, judiciary, intervention, legislature, democracy, constitution