‘NJC is over-step­ping its bounds’

Daily Trust - - NEWS - By Nu­rud­deen M. Ab­dal­lah

The Na­tional Ju­di­cial Coun­cil is over step­ping its bounds by try­ing to usurp the con­sti­tu­tional pow­ers of state gov­er­nors for ap­point­ing state chief judges.

Chief Charles Edo­somwan, SAN, a del­e­gate from Edo state dis­closed this dur­ing the ple­nary of the Na­tional Con­fer­ence yes­ter­day.

He said the NJC, though a rec­om­mend­ing body, is ex­er­cis­ing over-bear­ing in­flu­ence of wrestling the con­sti­tu­tional pow­ers con­ferred on state gov­er­nors to ap­point chief judges.

“NJC has over­stepped its rec­om­men­da­tion sta­tus granted it by the con­sti­tu­tion. It has usurped con­sti­tu­tional pow­ers of state gov­er­nors in ap­point­ment of state chief judges,” he said.

“The over-bear­ing in­flu­ence of this rec­om­mend­ing body is al­ready cre­at­ing ten­sions across the states. The sit­u­a­tion is very bad and we need to do some­thing about it be­fore it is too late,” he added.

But Mr Ajayi James Olawale, from Na­tional Youths Coun­cil of Nigeria, in­ter­rupted him, say­ing Edo­somwan was re­fer­ring to the case in Rivers State and the con­fer­ence won’t dab­ble into that be­cause the case is pend­ing in a court of law.

Edo­somwan re­sponded, say­ing it’s not true. He said such prob­lems were not re­stricted to Rivers. He said there were sim­i­lar cases in Adamawa, Enugu, Anam­bra states, among oth­ers.

He said NJC usurped con­sti­tu­tional power of gov­er­nors, “thereby de­lay­ing ad­ju­di­ca­tion process in these states en­meshed in this prob­lem.”

He said it’s high time that the need­less con­tro­versy is halted, “be­cause so many cases of fun­da­men­tal hu­man rights are in­volved.”

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