JUDICIARY NEWS 08/12/2023
NJC Sacks Osun Judge, Orders Probe Of 51 Petitions
The National Judicial Council (NJC) has recommended the compulsory retirement of a judge of the Osun High Court, S.O Falola over an alleged false order.
This is as the NJC also set up panels to investigate 51 petitions against other judges over various acts of misconduct in the discharge of their judicial duties.
The Director of Information at the NJC, Soji Oye disclosed this as part of the decisions at the 104th meeting in Abuja.
He said the council invoked its constitutional powers and placed the judge on indefinite suspension from duties pending the time Governor Ademola Adeleke would give effect to its recommendation.
The NJC indicated that Justice Falola granted a garnishee order against Polaris Bank for the sum of N283,174,000 in a questionable and strange manner.
The compulsory retirement recommendation was made sequel to the findings of an investigation committee in a petition written against the judge by one Dapo Kolapo Olowo and Polaris Bank.
Justice Falola was also found wanting for attaching the account of the garnishee with another garnishee and not the account of the judgment debtor who had the legal obligation to pay the supposed judgment sum.
NJC found that the judge misconducted himself by entertaining suit No HIK/41/2018 when there was no evidence of a judgment of the Kwara State High Court before him, neither was there a certificate of registration of same in Osun State to confer jurisdiction on him.
However, the council declined the request of Governor Adeleke for permission to swear in the next most senior judge in the state in acting capacity, following allegations levelled against the chief judge, Justice Oyebola Adepele-Ojo and the resolution of the state assembly to suspend him.
The meeting presided over by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Olukayode Ariwoola, also set up 11 probe panels to investigate 51 fresh petitions against other judicial officers for gross acts of misconduct.
The statement also revealed that the council considered the reports of other investigation committees that had concluded their sittings, and dismissed petitions written against the chief judge of Akwa Ibom State, Justice Ekaete F. F. Obot; Justice Benson Anya of High Court Abia State; Justice Z. B. Abubakar of Federal High Court; Justice Opufaa Ben-Whyte and Augusta Uche K. Chuku of the High Court of Rivers State, for being un-meritorious or withdrawal of petition by the petitioners.