CJN to judges: Task of cleaning ”augean stable”rests squarely on your shoulders 


The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, on Wednesday, saud the enormous task of cleaning the ‘Augean stable’ rests squarely on the shoulders of the new judges.

Ariwola, therefore urged them to fasten their belts and roll up your sleeves to face the challenges head-on.

He made this known at the swearing-in ceremony of the newly appointed 22 Justices of the Court of Appeal in Abuja.

”In other words, you should hit the ground speeding at a supersonic velocity; and not just running.

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”There are several unfathomable crimes being committed in the country, aside from the usual political matters that have made litigations to go on alarming rise.

“You must redouble your pace to catch up with the expectations of the sprawling community of litigants. As judicial officers, you have a divine mandate on earth that you must discharge with unveiled honesty and sincerity.

“Above all, you must give good account of yourselves to justify your elevation to the Court of Appeal,’’ he added.

He reminded the judges of the need to be diligent in the discharge of their duties even as they face two governorship elections in Edo and Ondo States, respectively.

“As usual, the courts will be besieged with plethora of petitions. It is our statutory duty to hear all matters that come before us and adjudicate according to the laws of the land.

“We must not falter; and we must not tread the path of infamy.

“Yes, it is true that we cannot please everyone through our actions and work, but with the right application of the law and the constitution of the land, which we all have collectively pledged to uphold; we can go a long way to do those things that our conscience will be very proud of; and the generality of the Nigerian citizens will equally be happy about.

“Every position we attain in life always avails us that unique opportunity to do something novel and impactful, especially if there was any previous act of wrongdoing or misapplication of discretion.

“With your lordships’ elevation to the higher bench today, you have to be very mindful of the enormous confidence the public is now reposing in you vis-a-vis theis expectations’’.

He lamented the fact that the judiciary has been treated to an unpalatable cocktail of misleading and conflicting judgments as well as trivolous interlocutory orders emanating from courts of coordinate jurisdictions.

“These have literally attempted to make a mockery of our judicial system and flagrantly desecrate the revered temple of justice.

“Several cases of such abound across the length and breadth of the country. This is, largely, an embarrassment to our jurisprudence, and we win never handle it with levity.

“Punitive measures must definitely be meted out to such erring Judges.

“We have already activated the process of reining-in such errant Judges with a view to making them face the consequence of their despicable and odious conduct’’.

He reminded the judges that they are not occupying their respective positions to serve ourselves, but the Nigerian masses.

“And the best way we can serve them is by doing what will make them feel safe in our hands and also trust us to always deliver the right judgments that will not be tainted by sentiments, emotions or other clandestine considerations’’.

The new Justices are: Abdullahi Muhammad Liman from Nasarawa State; Abiodun Akinyemi from Ogun State; Olukayode  Adeniyi from Oyo State; Zainab  Abubakar from Kebbie; Isaq Sani from Kaduna State and Lateef  Lawal-Akapo from Lagos State and Ngozika U. Okaisabor from Imo.

Others are Donatus  Okorowo from Enugu State; Ruqayat Ayoola from Kogi; Polycarp Kwahar from Benue; Eberechi Nyesom-Wike from Rivers; Fadawa Umaru from Borno, Oyewumi Oyebiola from Oyo State; Ntong Festus Ntong from Akwa Ibom; Nehizena Afolabi from Edo; and Nnamdi Dimgba from Abia.

The rest are Abdu Dogo from Federal Capital Territory, Abuja; Abdulazeez M. Anka from Zamfara; Owibunkeonye Onwosi from Ebonyi; Asma’u Akanbi-Yusuf from Kwara; Victoria Nwoye from Anambra State; and Enenche Eleojo from Kogi . (NAN)

By Ebere Agozie

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