cannot be considered as a case of competence but dishonesty.”
“Arising from this particular issue is lack of sophistication on the part of our litigants or accused persons. If a court brazenly violates the constitution in order to vest itself a jurisdiction which it does not possess it cannot claim to be acting bona fide. It is clearly acting mala fide which an adroit counsel can exploit to bring an action in tort against such a judge or members of the court dealing with his client’s case in bad faith.”
The comment by Salami, according to many analysts, reflects the pervasiveness and ubiquity of corruption in Nigeria. It therefore becomes worrisome when the menace now spreads to the temple of justice.
Reacting to Salami’s remarks, former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Dahiru Musdapher who was a special guest of honour at another event organised the following day by the Faculty of Law, University of Ilorin, said it would be scandalous if the statement was true.
However, he confessed that the system is so bad nowadays owing to desperation by officers to become judges. “In those days people do not even ask to be appointed judges. The mere fact that you asked to be appointed a judge, you have disqualified yourself”, he said, adding, “All kinds of people find their ways into becoming judges. Just as I said, the legal practice itself either on the bench or outside must be done with the sense of decency and sense of justice. That is what is done everywhere.”
However, Governor Ahmed who noted that the only panacea to growth and development is equity and justice said Nigeria judiciary must maintain its neutrality and impartiality.
“I urge the judiciary to maintain its impartiality, resist the temptation to descend into the arena at all times, promote strict adherence to the rule of law and uphold the independence of the judiciary as safeguards against political interference and manipulation,” Ahmed added.