Checkmate Impunity by Adhering to Law, CJN Tells 19 New Judges

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The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen, on Friday admonished the newly appointed 19 judges of the National Industrial Court to check impunity in the country by adhering to the law.

Justice Onnoghen gave this charge after swearing in the new judges at the special court of the Supreme Court in Abuja.

He said, “When you need to take hard decisions, take it; heavens will not fall. Heaven has never fallen because of anybody’s judgment.

“We can only checkmate impunity through adherence to the law.”

He urged the judges to be guided by the oaths of allegiance to the Nigerian Constitution and their office.

He added that if they allowed themselves to be guided by the Constitution, laws of the land, and their conscience, they would never go wrong.

He said, “I want to advise judicial officers, particularly those of you that have just been sworn in, to always be guided by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the laws and your conscience.

“I assure you that as judicial officers, if you remain true to the oaths of your office, you have no problem; anything you need to function in that office is contained in the oath of office.

“If you allow yourself to be guided by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the law, and your conscience, you can never go wrong.

“Two persons you cannot deceive — yourself and your God.”

The swearing-in ceremony was followed by Acting President Yemi Osinbajo’s earlier approval of the recommendation of the National Judicial Council for the appointment of the new 19 judicial officers.

The newly sworn-in judges with their states of origin are, Targema John Iorngee (Benue), Namtari Mahmood Abba (Adamawa), Nweneka Gerald Ikechi (Rivers), Kado Sanusi (Katsina), Adeniyi Sinmisola Oluyinka (Ogun), Abiola Adunola Adewemimo (Osun) Opeloye Ogunbowale (Lagos), Essien Isaac Jeremiah (Akwa-Ibom) and Elizabeth Ama Oji (Ebonyi) .

Others are, Arowosegbe Olukayode Ojo (Ondo), Ogbuanya Nelson S. Chukwudi (Enugu), Bashir Zaynab Mohammed (Niger), Galadima Ibrahim Suleiman (Nasarawa), Bassi Paul Ahmed (Borno), Danjidda Salisu Hamisu (Kano), Hamman Idi Polycarp (Taraba), Damulak Kiyersohot Dashe (Plateau), Alkali Bashar Attahiru (Sokoto), and Mustapha Tijjani (Jigawa).

With the 19 new judges sworn in on Friday, the number of the judges of the NIC rose from 20, including the President of the court, Justice Babatunde Adejumo, to 39.

The NIC currently has divisions in 19 states of the federation and Abuja.

The swearing-in ceremony was attended by family members and friends of the new judges.

Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State, the President of the National Industrial Court, Justice Adejumo, some retired and serving judges of NIC and other courts, as well as some lawyers, were also present at the event.

With the CJN on the bench, where he presided over the administering of the oaths to the new judges were 11 Justices of the Supreme Court.

Source: The Punch

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