By Tobi Soniyi in Abuja
The National Judicial Council has recommended a judge of Cross River State High Court, Justice B. T. Ebuta, for compulsory retirement after the council found him to have violated the Code of Conduct for judicial officers.
A statement announcing Ebuta’s retirement from the bench was issued in Abuja on Friday and signed by NJC’s Acting Director of Information, Mr Soji Oye.
The statement said that the decision to retire the judge was taken at the NJC meeting held on 1st and 2nd June, 2016.
Pending the time the Cross River State Governor will approve the NJC’s recommendation, the council said it, “has in the exercise of its disciplinary powers under the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended, suspended Hon. Justice B. T. Ebuta from office with immediate effect .”
The statement said: “Justice Ebuta was recommended for compulsory retirement from office to the Governor of Cross River State, sequel to the findings by the council on the allegations of abuse of judicial power, suppression and illegal/forceful takeover of a property in Calabar as contained in the petition written against him by Dr. (Mrs) Ekanem Cobham.
“The petitioner had alleged:
That Ebuta made an order based on ex-parte application without sitting in court.
That Ebuta granted the said ex-parte application to unseal her property which was sealed on the order of a Magistrate Court when her tenant, Mr. Ugochukwu Chijioke failed to pay rent for two years. She stated that she filed Suit No MC/RT/12/6/14 at the Magistrate Court, Calabar against her tenant for failing to pay her rent and judgement was delivered in her favour on 10th November, 2014.
Further details later