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Author Topic: UNBELIEVABLE! NBA backtracks, calls for suspension of arrested judges  (Read 637 times)

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Offline Goodiez Chibuike Nwachukwu

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– The Nigerian Bar Association has called for the suspension of all the judges affected by the recent Department of State Services raid

– The president of the association Abubakar Mahmoud said the suspension will enable the accused judges prove their innocence

– Another retiring judge Sotonye Denton-West, also said she was at some point, a victim of corruption in the judiciary

The president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Abubakar Mahmoud

The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has made a U-turn over the raid and arrest of some Nigerian judges by the Department of State Services (DSS).

In a request made by the NBA president Abubakar Mahmoud called for the suspension all the affected judges.

Mahmoud, who spoke at a valedictory court session of the retirement of Justice Sotonye Denton-West said it is pertinent for all the judges to face judicial actions until their innocence is proven.

The call for the suspension of the judges comes after the NBA had berated the raid by the DSS on the affected justice of the Supreme Court and Federal High Courts.

He said the back and forth accusations between affected judges and some politicians led to National Judicial Council’s decision on the matter.

The NBA president further called for an urgent intervention to restore the reputation of Nigeria’s judiciary.

“In the interim however, particularly having regards to what appears to an ongoing accusations and counter accusations between the some of the judges and other personalities or agencies, it appears to the NBA that it is extremely important that the NJC takes very urgent steps to safeguard the public image and sanctity of the courts,” Mahmoud said.

“We therefore strongly recommend that, without prejudice to the innocence or otherwise of the Judges involved in the ongoing investigations.

“They should be required to recuse themselves from further judicial functions or required to proceed on compulsory leave until their innocence is fully and completely established or until the conclusion of all judicial or disciplinary proceedings.

“We believe this will be necessary in order to protect the sanctity and integrity of judicial processes that may involve the judges concerned and safeguard the public image of the institution,” the NBA president concluded.

Also speaking Denton-West admitted to being a victim of corruption in the judiciary.

Denton-West who was the presiding justice at the Court of Appeal, Akure division advised that efforts should be made by all judicial institution to tackle the issue at hand.

“Indeed, I know and believe that there is corruption, unfortunately even in the folds of the Judiciary. I have personally been a victim of corrupt act from the Judiciary on some occasions.

“The Nigerian Judiciary in the past has been one of the greatest in the world, but it is time to relive and embrace the rule of law in its entirety. It seems only lip service is paid to this great doctrine. It is essential that the rule of law must be observed in order for society to run smoothly, otherwise the beauty of democracy will elude us.

“The rule of law is observed when there is mutual respect between the authorities and those subject to authority and, between the powers that be and their subjects, in accordance with the law. For we are all subject to the law,” she said.

Some weeks ago, the houses of five Nigerian judges including Justice Sylvester Ngwuta of the Supreme Court, Justice Adeniyi Ademola and Justice Nnamdi Dimgba of the Federal High Court were raided by operatives of the DSS.

The DSS after their raid said investigations proved the judges were corrupt and at different times had requested for bribes from parties in some of their cases in order to influence  court judgement in their favour.

The DSS also said that money in various currencies – naira, United States dollars and pounds were found in the houses of these judges.



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