The National Judicial Council, under the chairmanship of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen, announced on Monday that it had set up 15 panels to probe some judicial officers. The decision to set up the panels was taken at the 83rd meeting of the NJC.
Takeaways from the NJC statement signed by its director of information, Soji Oye:
- The Council did not disclose the names of the judges it was investigating. It is unclear why, although a plausible reason may be to avoid a media trial until the allegations are proven.
- The Council however stated that those under investigation include two state chief justices and 13 other judges accused of misconduct.
- The Council dismissed 31 petitions. Reasons: 29 of the petitions were found to be without merit while the remaining two written against Justice J. T. Tsoho of the Federal High Court and Justice O. O. Akeredolu, Acting Chief Judge of Ondo State, were withdrawn at the instance of the petitioners.
- One particular petition against the immediate past chief judge of Plateau state, Justice P. D. Damulak, over alleged bias was found worthy of further investigation. However the Council says it would not investigate it because the judge has already retired from service and was therefore no longer in its employ.
- The NJC decided to issue two letters of advice to Justice M. A. Dada of the Lagos State High Court of Justice and Justice Chukwudi Charles Okaa of the Anambra State High Court for violation of extant laws in the course of their judicial duties based on petition written against their Lordships by Dayo Adamolekun, Esq. & Ridwanulah Olanite, Esq. and Reverend F. U. Ekavhiare & Associates respectively.
Similarly: The Council welcomed the dismissal of a judge, Justice Musa Anka, by the Zamfara State government for receiving N200,000 bribe. We reported on that story HERE.