Oyo State Governor, ‘Seyi Makinde, has sworn-in Justice Iyabo Yerima as the substantive Chief Judge of the state.
The governor, who performed the swearing-in at the Executive Chamber of the Governor’s Office, Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan, said that his administration will continue to support the judiciary by prioritising the welfare of its members.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, indicated that Makinde further explained that his administration will give Justice Yerima the support needed to carry out her duties diligently.
It will be recalled that Justice Yerima was confirmed as acting Chief Judge by the Oyo State by the State’s House of Assembly on April 12, 2023, following the retirement of the immediate past Chief Judge, Justice Muntar Abimbola.
Governor Makinde indicated that his administration will soon complete the rehabilitation of the High Court complex at Ring Road, Ibadan and the Magistrate Court at Iyaganku.
The governor, who charged Justice Yerima and other judges to discharge their responsibilities as judicial officers without giving in to hindrance from any quarters, said that the judiciary must justify the sacred trust reposed in it by the people of the state.
While congratulating the new Chief Judge on his appointment, Governor Makinde described her as a judge who had always demonstrated hardwork, urging her to use her wealth of experience to uplift the Oyo State Judiciary.
He said: “Few months ago, we gathered here to swear in Justice Iyabo Yerima as the Acting Chief Judge of Oyo State. While on the campaign trail, I remember expressing confidence that we would work together, and here we are today.
“Today, in accordance with Section 271 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended, we are swearing in Justice Iyabo Yerima as the substantive Chief Judge of Oyo State. This was done after her appointment was confirmed by the Oyo State House of Assembly.
“So, it is essential to emphasise the importance of the institutions and set processes. This is why we need strong institutions and once they are strong and we follow the processes that govern those institutions, then we will be stronger.”
The governor added that the country needed stronger institutions to surmount its myriads of challenges, saying: “I believe we need strong institutions in Nigeria right now, but we also need people to build the strong institutions.
“We need people with experience, people with capacity, and strong conviction to do what is right. That is why the appointment of Hon. Justice Yerima is important, because she has the experience in leadership and can hold her own.
“The Judiciary is, of course, the last hope of the common men, and it is an institution that should not have any interference with the Executive. So, this is our promise to you and Nigerians.”
He said that the state ensure that when judges are sent on posting, they are sent on hardship posting.
“Our vision is also to have an Oyo State that is developed all across the zones”
In her acceptance message, the newly sworn-in Chief judge appreciated the state governor for appointing her, pledging to dispense worthwhile justice for a sustained development of the state.
She explained that the judiciary has enjoyed maximum cooperation and support under Makinde’s administration, particularly for his commitment and passion for the arm of government.
She disclosed that the state judiciary is currently undergoing some major infrastructural development at different courts, while appealing for more support that will enable accelerated completion of the projects.
She also disclosed that the state High court in Ogbomoso will be completed and ready for commissioning before May 29, the day the governor’s second term will kick off .