NLNG Corporate Caring banner FirstGem 3rd anniversay lecture Fidelity bank card banner Emerald Energy Institute Camano banner

SERAP demands immediate recall of suspended Abia Chief Judge •Threatens legal action

By News Express on 28/01/2018

Gmail icon

Views: 948

•Suspended Abia CJ, Justice Theresa Uzokwe
•Suspended Abia CJ, Justice Theresa Uzokwe

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has urged Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State to “immediately withdraw his illegal appointment of Justice Obisike Orji as the acting Chief Judge of the state and restore Justice Theresa Uzokwe, who was unlawfully removed by the State House of Assembly, back to her position as Chief Judge.”

The House of Assembly had on Friday passed a resolution suspending Justice Uzokwe as the state’s chief judge. The speaker, Mr. Chikwendu Kalu, while reading the resolution, set up 8-man ad-hoc committee to investigate allegations of misconduct against the judge, and mandated Governor Ikpeazu to appoint an acting chief judge pending the completion of the investigation by the committee.

But SERAP in a statement today by its deputy director Timothy Adewale said: “Rather than using their executive and legislative powers to promote good governance and abolish laws granting double emoluments and large severance benefits to former governors, the Abia State government is denigrating the judiciary and displaying contempt for the rule of law.”

According to SERAP, “The purported suspension of Justice Uzokwe violates sections 292(1)(a)(ii) and 21(d) Part 11 of the Third Schedule to the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended), and amounts to a blatant attack on the integrity and independence of the judiciary. No judge anywhere in Nigeria can be removed without the involvement of the National Judicial Council (NJC), no matter the level of allegations of misconduct against that judge.”

The organization said, “Governor Ikpeazu must rescind his illegal appointment of a new chief judge, and the Abia State House of Assembly must withdraw the apparently politically motivated suspension of Justice Uzokwe without further delay. Doing so will be entirely consistent with the decision of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in the case of Raliat Elelu-Habeed & anor v Attorney General of the Federation and Attorney General of Kwara State (2012).”

The organisation said: “If allowed to stand, the suspension of Justice Uzokwe would set a bad example to other state governments, and dangerously move them toward executive and legislative dominance and control over the judiciary. Should Ikpeazu and the House fail to restore Justice Uzokwe back to her position, SERAP will undertake appropriate legal action including before the NJC and the UN special procedure mechanisms, to seek justice and effective remedies in this matter.”

The statement reads in part: “The suspension also infringes the constitutional principle of the separation of governmental powers. Constitutional guarantees are meant to protect the judiciary from the political caviling that removal power often engenders. The benefits of the integrity of the judiciary should never be supplanted by the temerity and excessiveness which political powers often breed.

“An independent judiciary is the foundation upon which the entire structure of our constitution rests. The suspension of Justice Uzokwe is a serious threat to this independence, and any impression that this principle is being improperly eroded should be directly and speedily addressed.

“Justice Uzokwe would seem to be a victim of the government’s plan to harass judicial officials in Abia State. Neither the House of Assembly nor Ikpeazu is constitutionally authorized to suspend Justice Uzokwe without the participation of the NJC.

“The independence of the judiciary is a barrier to despotism and necessary to secure a steady, upright, and impartial administration of the laws. This independence ought to be promoted and protected by the Abia State government. Executive and legislative invasions of it should never be allowed to stand.

“A judge is in no sense under the direction of the government. The judiciary is in a place apart, and constitutionally independent. It is of supreme importance, not only that justice be done, but that litigants before the court and the public generally understand that it is being done and that the judge is beholden to no one but God, his/her conscience, and the judicial oath.

“The framers of our constitution sought to establish the judiciary’s independence and remove undue influence by both the executive and legislative branches by prescribing due process of law for removal of judges.”

Source News Express

Posted 28/01/2018 2:21:22 PM

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

 

You may also like...
Group laments effect of brain drain on Nigeria,...

Shocker: WORK STOPS ON 2ND NIGER BRIDGE •We...

Anambra House of Assembly passes 2015 Appropriation Bill...

DSS grills Ikeja (Lagos) Oba-elect

Sallah: FG declares Thursday, Friday (Sept. 24 and...

Buhari’s man escapes death in mosque attack, to...

6 teenagers take US governorship race by storm...

Southern elders vote for restructuring

Pirates attack Polish ship off Nigeria coast, kidnap...

Recall of indicted NHIS boss a big blow...

No one can bring down your government, Ibadan...

Lethal Love: Bobbi Kristina's boyfriend accused of injecting...

 

Latest News BREAKING: Robbers attack commercial bank in Ekiti, blows up entrance with dynamite Rotary Club laments high rate of STIs, unsafe abortions, unwanted pregnancy Kogi, Bayelsa Polls: HURIWA berates Police for compromising citizens’ security •Wants media blackout for DSS Youth strategic to the Nigerian Project — Dare Child Protection Network enjoins children to shun bullying, cultism in schools Lawyer shot dead in court APC NEC meeting: Protesters demand Oshiomhole’s immediate sack Justice Nwosu-Iheme: How ‘Uniformed Policemen’ abducted me, killed my orderly in Benin City Rivers serial killer makes U-Turn, denies being guilty Sanusi floors Ganduje as court dissolves other Kano emirate councils Gunmen attack commissioner, kill driver Judge stops proceedings as Maina bleeds in court during trial

 

Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (564,403 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (453,082 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (402,384 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (336,890 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (304,402 views) 10 cars more expensive than Jets (283,102 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (259,359 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (257,614 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (239,133 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (225,568 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (201,909 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (198,566 views)

 

CBN milk production

CBN banner advert

UBA Wise Savers Promo

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (110) Business & Economy (4,580) Business Verdict (87) Columnists (1,147) Complaints & Requests (97) Enterprise & Opportunities (219) Entertainment (708) Features (845) Global Business Monitor (493) ICT Monitor (68) International (4,228) Interview (212) Live Commentary (30) Love Matters (176) Maggie's Blog (490) News (54,231) Opinion (1,424) Pidgin (17) Politics (11,786) Religion (1,122) Sports (2,230) Stock Watch (40) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

 

 

 

 

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera