Home News Court rejects suit seeking to stop FCT CJ from appointing 12 judges

Court rejects suit seeking to stop FCT CJ from appointing 12 judges

by Nike
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A Federal High Court a, on Friday, rejected a suit seeking to stop the Chief Judge of FCT High Court, Hussein Baba-Yusuf, from appointing 12 judges into the bench of the court.

Justice Inyang Ekwo, in a ruling on the ex-parte motion moved by Emmanuel Emerenini, rather directed the plaintiff, Azubuike Oko, to put the defendants on notice of the motion ex-parte within 2 days of the order.

Justice Ekwo also ordered Oko, a legal practitioner, to serve the defendants with all processes filed in the suit within two days of the order for the defendants to show cause why the prayers on the motion ought not to be granted in the next adjourned date.

The judge, however, made an order for accelerated hearing and adjourned the matter until March 4.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the plaintiff, in the ex-parte motion marked: FHC)ABJ/CS/205/2024, had sued Baba-Yusuf, National Judicial Council (NJC) and Federal Judicial Service Commission (FJSC) as 1st to 3rd defendants.

Also joined in the suit dated and filed on Feb. 16 by Nkemakolam Okoro are the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), President of Nigeria and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) as 4th to 6th defendants respectively.

The plaintiff sought an order directing the parties in the suit to maintain status quo ante bellum pending the hearing and determination of his motion on notice.

In the affidavit deposed to by Christiana Dominic, Litigation Assistant in Okoro’s law firm, she described Oko as a taxpayer, a voter and a lawyer with over 19 years of experience in legal practice.

She said Oko hails from Ebonyi, which had been routinely excluded and marginalised with respect to the appointment of judges of the High Court of FCT by Baba-Yusuf, NJC and FJSC.

The lawyer averred that, as a matter of fact, it was the CJ (Baba-Yusuf) that computes the names of qualified lawyers from selected states of the federation and transmitted to FJSC for recommendation to NJC for appointment by the President of Nigeria,as judges of the FCT High Court.

Dominic said based on the information from the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), the states mentioned for nomination of lawyers for appointment as judges of thee court into the 12 positions were Bauchi, Bayelsa, Enugu, Imo, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Oyo, Plateau, Rivers, Taraba, and Zamfara.

She averred that currently, Oyo and Kogji “already had two serving judges in the FCT High Court, and the two states were given additional slots, to now have three judges, despite the fact that Ebonyi State has no single serving judge in the High Court of the FCT.”

The lawyer prayed the court to grant their motion in the interest of justice.

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