Inequity in Nigeria’s Judicial System: A Tale of Two Offenders


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– Adejola Adeyemi Crown

The recent sentencing of controversial figure Bobrisky to six months in prison for abusing the Nigerian currency, the naira, has brought to light glaring disparities within Nigeria’s judicial system. While Bobrisky’s case has been swiftly met with a harsh punishment, another incident involving the public abuse of the naira has left many questioning the consistency of justice.

Bobrisky, known for his flamboyant lifestyle and social media presence, was convicted by Justice Abimbola Awogboro of the Federal High Court, Lagos. The judgment, which denied Bobrisky any option for a fine, was justified as a necessary deterrent against others who might engage in similar acts of currency abuse.

In contrast, Oba Kolawole Sowemino, the Olu of Owode-Egba, was recently captured on video publicly abusing the naira at a social function. Despite clear evidence of his actions contravening Section 21(3) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007, which prohibits the defacing or abuse of the naira during social occasions, the monarch has faced no apparent legal repercussions.

This stark discrepancy in treatment raises serious concerns about the impartiality and fairness of Nigeria’s legal system. Why was Bobrisky, a public figure, swiftly and severely punished for his offense, while a traditional ruler seemingly evades similar consequences for a similar act?

Some argue that Bobrisky’s high profile and controversial reputation may have influenced the severity of his sentence, with the court aiming to send a strong message to other social influencers. However, this rationale fails to justify the apparent leniency shown towards Oba Sowemino, whose position of authority should hold him equally accountable under the law.

The principle of equality before the law is a fundamental tenet of justice, yet its application seems to waver when confronted with individuals of varying social status. The selective enforcement of legal provisions not only undermines public trust in the judiciary but also perpetuates a culture of impunity among the elite.

For justice to truly prevail, regardless of one’s status or influence, there must be consistent and equitable application of the law.

The case of Bobrisky and Oba Sowemino serves as a sobering reminder of the work that remains to be done in ensuring the integrity and fairness of Nigeria’s judicial system.

Tropic Reporters
Tropic Reporters
Tropic Reporters is an online news platform based in Nigeria that focuses on promoting journalism from the citizens' perspectives to enhance access to credible information and clarification on basic issues and topics affecting the growth and development of our communities and other parts of Africa and the world in general. For advertisment WhatsApp/Telegram: 07066518087

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