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NASS, others sued over judges’ poor remuneration, neglect 

By Ameh Ochojila, Abuja
03 May 2022   |   3:00 am
A constitutional lawyer and author, Chief Sabastian Hon (SAN), has dragged the National Assembly (NASS) and three others before a Federal High Court, Abuja, over alleged neglect

SAN seeks N12m, N11m monthly pay for CJN, JSC

A constitutional lawyer and author, Chief Sabastian Hon (SAN), has dragged the National Assembly (NASS) and three others before a Federal High Court, Abuja, over alleged neglect and poor remuneration of judicial officers in Nigeria.

  
Other defendants in the suit are the Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Allocation Commission (RMFAC) (2nd defendant), the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) (3rd defendant) and the National Judicial Council (NJC) (4th defendant). 
  
The plaintiff is seeking an order of mandatory injunction for the National Judicial Council (NJC), NASS, RMFAC and AGF to set in motion legal machinery to immediately review upwards the salaries and emoluments of judicial officers to conform to the economic reality.
  
He prayed the court to review upward the monthly salary of the CJN, JSC, President, Court of Appeals and Chief Judge of the Federal High Court to N12m, N11m, and N10m respectively.
  
Hon asked for an order t direct the relevant bodies to pay a minimum of N10m to each Justice of the Court of Appeal; N8m for each Judge of the Federal High Court and the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), monthly. 

For the Grand khadi of Sharia court of appeal, he prayed the court to grant a minimum of N8m monthly and N7m for its counterpart in states.
 
In his originating summon, the plaintiff requested for the interpretation of the relevant sections of the Constitution that empowers the defendants to activate increment of salaries and emoluments of Nigeria’s Judicial Officers.
 

 
“Whether, by a combined interpretation of sections 4(1) & (2) and 81(1)-(4) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria, (as altered) read in conjunction with section 6(1)(d) and Parts A and B of the First Schedule to the Revenue Allocation Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission Act, Cap. R7, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, the 1st and 2nd defendants have unbridled, whimsical and untrammeled powers to arbitrarily and unreasonably refuse, fail or neglect to upwardly review the basic salaries and allowances
  
“Whether, by a combined interpretation of sections 4(1) and (2), 6(1), (3), (5)(a)-(j) and (6) and 81(1)-(4) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria, (as altered), read in conjunction with section 6(1)(d) and Parts A and B of the First Schedule to the Revenue Allocation Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission Act, Cap. R7, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, this Honourable Court has jurisdiction or is under a duty to compel the 1st and 2nd defendants to exercise their constitutional and statutory discretionary powers to upwardly review the basic salaries and allowances of the Judicial Officers listed,” he asked.
 
 
The plaintiff also wants the court to determine whether a combined interpretation of sections 84(1) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria, (as altered), read in conjunction with sections 6(1)(b) and (d) and Parts A and B of the First Schedule to the Revenue Allocation Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission Act, Cap. R7, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, the 2nd defendant has not shirked its constitutional responsibility of fixing higher salaries and allowances for Judicial Officers
  
He also wants the court to determine whether the current salaries and other emoluments paid by the respective Judicial Officers listed above are not embarrassingly too low and unrealistic, given the current socio-economic and other conditions existing in Nigeria and the current global comparative salaries and allowances paid to Judicial Officers.

 
 

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