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CJN’s Resignation: NBA President Calls for Judicial Reforms

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The President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Olumide Akpata is calling for urgent judicial reforms in the wake of the resignation of Nigeria’s Chief Justice, Muhammad Tanko.

Justice Tanko’s resignation was made public on Monday, a week after 14 Justices of the Supreme Court accused him of neglect.

He reportedly resigned due to ill-health but not a few people believe he was forced to leave office.

In a statement released after the news broke, the NBA President, Olumide Akpata said the resignation cannot be separated from his fallout with the other Justices of the Supreme Court.

“We thank His Lordship for his lengthy service to the nation, and wish him quick recovery even as we pray for a well-deserved peaceful retirement,” Mr. Akpata wrote.

“It is however impossible to consider his Lordship’s retirement in isolation of the recent unprecedented developments at the Supreme Court where 14 justices of the court censured the outgone Chief Justice of Nigeria over his Lordship’s handling of their welfare and related issues.    

“Beyond this, there is near universal agreement that public confidence in the judiciary and indeed the legal profession is at an all-time low,” he continued.

As a result, Mr. Akpata called for immediate reforms.

“There is now more than ever the need for urgent reforms in the Judiciary and to rebuild the almost dissipated confidence that Nigerians have in the Judiciary and the wider legal profession in Nigeria. 

“These should form the immediate first tasks for Honorable Mr. Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, who is expected to now take over as the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria.”

Justice Ariwoola is expected to be sworn in on Monday.

Ariwoola cropped

He was appointed to the bench of the Supreme Court on 22 November 2011.


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