NJC Wields the Big Stick

The National Judicial Council (NJC) has issued warning letters to three Judges, and barred them from elevation to higher Bench for a period of time.

The NJC also empanelled Committees to investigate 8 Judges of the Federal & State Courts, and appointed 86 Judicial Officers for Federal and State Courts. This information was contained in a press release signed by Soji Oye, the Director, Information, NJC.

In the statement he said ‘The National Judicial Council under the Chairmanship of Hon. Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, GCON, at its plenary of 105th Meeting held on 15 and 16 May 2024, resolved to issue warning letters to Hon. Justice Inyang E. Ekwo of the Federal High Court and Hon. Justice G. B. Brikins-Okolosi of Delta State High Court. 

‘Hon Justice Inyang E. Ekwo is warned for abuse of discretionary power of a Judge, by wrongly granting an ex-parte order in Suit No FHC/ABJ/C/626/2023 Juliet Ebert Nwadi Gbaka & 2 Ors v Seplat Energy Plc & 12 Ors. The Hon. Judge is also barred from being elevated to a higher Bench for a period of two years.

‘Hon. Justice G.B. Brikins-Okolosi of Delta State High Court is also issued a warning, for failure to deliver judgement within the stipulated period in Joseph Anene Okafor v Skye Bank, Suit No A/94/2010, after parties had filed and adopted their final Written Addresses. Justice G. B. Brikins-Okolosi will also not be elevated to a higher Bench for a period of three years.’

The NJC cautioned Hon. Justice Amina Shehu of Yobe State High Court, for issuing a Writ of Possession Conferring Title on the Defendant in Suit No YBS/HC/NNR/1cv/2020 when there was no subsisting judgement of any Court to enable His Lordship issue the Writ.

‘The Council deliberated on the notification of retirements of three Judicial Officers, including that of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Hon. Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, GCON and notification of death of three Judges of the Federal and State Courts. 

‘Council at the Meeting also considered the recommendation of its Interview Committee on Appointment of Judicial Officers of all Superior Courts of Record in Nigeria, and resolved to recommend 86 Judicial Officers for appointment to the Court of Appeal, High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Sharia Courts of Appeal and Customary Courts of Appeal of States in Nigeria….’

The press release concluded saying: ‘All recommended candidates are expected to be sworn-in after the approval of the NJC recommendations to the President and their respective State Governors.’

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