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Judges’ appointment: Group urges presidency to ignore petition against NJC

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Human rights group, Citizens’ Rights Initiative (CRI) has called on President Buhari to discountenance a petition written by a group of lawyers against the National Judicial Council (NJC) on the list on nominees to the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court judges.

The group described the petition as unfounded and baseless, noting it was sponsored by some enemies of the judiciary whose goal amongst others is to bring the judiciary to disrepute by not seeing anything good in whatever the judiciary does.

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It would be recalled that a group of lawyers under the auspices of Open Bar Initiative (OBI) had in a petition dated April 30, 2020, and signed by the duo of Silas Joseph Onu and Dr. Chidi Anselm Odinkalu, the group’s co-convener called on President Buhari and the leadership of the National Assembly, to reject the list on the grounds that NJC failed to comply with laid down rules and procedures and High Court of the FCT Act, 2003.

OBI particularly moved against the nomination of Chief Magistrate, Olufola Olufolashade Oshin, whom it alleged did not parttake at any level of the nomination in the processes and her name was smuggled into the list. It also alleged that the list contained the names of children and relations of both serving and retired justices.

However, CRI in a counter-petition dated May 8, 2020 and signed by its Convener, Yakubu Eleto, urged the President to discountenance the lawyers’ petition as it an assault on the image and integrity of NJC and Oshin’s personality, demanding they tender an unreserved apology both parties in three national dailies.

CRI further stated that NJC is a creation of statutes and its activities are governed by the constitution of Nigeria and is therefore not plausible for the NJC to expressly go against its own rules as alleged by OBI.

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