By Alex Enumah
The National Judicial Council (NJC) has recommended the elevation of four Justices of the Court of Appeal to the bench of the Supreme Court.
The recommendation was part of decisions reached at the 2nd virtual meeting of the council held on August 11 and 12, 2020.
Information posted on the website of the NJC on August 14, gave the names of those recommended to President Muhammadu Buhari for appointment to the Supreme Court as; Justice Tijjani Abubakar (North-east Zone), Justice Mohammed L. Garba (North-west Zone), Justice Abdu Aboki (North-west Zone) and Justice Mohammed M. Saulawa (North-west Zone).
Current Supreme Court Justices are Tanko Muhammad, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justices Rhodes Vivour, Mary Odili, Musa Datijo, Kudira kekere-Ekun and Sylvester Ngwuta. Others are Justices Inyang Okoro, Olukayode Ariwoola, Uwani Abba-Aji, Amina Augie, Cletus Nweze and Ejembi Eko.
The information signed by the Director Information, NJC, Mr. Soji Oye, noted that the Supreme Court of Nigeria currently have a total number of 12 Justices including the Chief Justice of Nigeria, consisting of two (2) Justices from North-central, one (1) from the North-east, one (1) from North-west, three (3) from South-east, one (1) from the South-south and three (3) from the South-west.
It would be recalled that the NJC had last October recommended the appointment of Justices Adamu Jauro (North-east); Emmanuel Agim (South-south); C. Oseji, (South-south) and Helen Ogunwumiju, (South-west).
However, nearly one year after their recommendation, the president was yet to approve.
Outside the Supreme Court, the NJC also announced the appointment of Justice Gunnar Kaigama as Chief Judge of Yobe State and Kadi Muhammed Abubakar as Kadi, Sharia Court of Appeal, Katsina State, while Justice Mathew Njoku, was recommended for appointment as President of Customary Court of Appeal.
The council also recommended; Jamilu Suleiman, Maryam Sabo, Sanusi Ma’aji, Abdu Abubakar, Zuwaira Yusuf and Hafsat Sani, for appointment as judges of High Court of Kano State, while it recommended Clara Kataps and Kazera Kodiya as Judges of the High Court of Taraba State.
Those recommended for appointment as Kadis, Sharia Court of Appeal, Kaduna State are; Muhammad Danjuma, Mustapha Umar, Muhammad Rashid and Muhammad Sidi, while Gabriel Okafor, Grace Ibiye and Jessica Gberevbie, were recommended as Judges of Customary Court of Appeal, Delta State.
Oye said, all recommended candidates are expected to be sworn-in after approval by President Buhari and their respective state governors and confirmation by the National Assembly and the respective State House of Assemblies.