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Group alleges bias in judicial appointments

By Emma Arubi
WARRI — MEMBERS of the Itsekiri Leaders of Thought, yesterday, aligned itself with the position of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) in condemning the appointment of children and relations of serving, influential or retired appellate court judges to positions far beyond their judicial capacity in the nations judicial system.

They also identified with the Committee for the Defence of Human Rights (CDHR), calling for a proper investigation of N250 million monthly largesse allegedly dished out to members of Delta State House of Assembly by the EFCC and other anti-corruption agencies, saying it is a brazen abuse of public fund meant for the development of the neglected Niger-Delta region.

In a statement signed by Pa. J.O.S. Ayomike, Chiefs Ogbitse Edodo and Isaac Jemide, respectively, on behalf of the group, they said the appointment of judges to the High and Appellate Courts in recent years is clearly in breach of Section 14(3) of the 1999 Constitution as it does not reflect the federal character principle any more.

The Itsekiris maintained that only children of the anointed ones get appointed these days “even at the Supreme Court”, stressing that the judiciary as the beacon of hope for the common man should be above board in all it does.

The statement reads in part; “the unfortunate dimension it now assumes is that their children and relations are often chosen or appointed above their seniors and more experienced and better candidates, thereby not encouraging merit in the judiciary”, warning that if the nation is to forged ahead successfully, the National Judicial Council should show the light and the way forward..

According to them, the DESOPADEC alleged N250m largesse to the state House of Assembly is scandalous in the same way monies meant for the development of oil bearing communities were spent by the oil Commission to “renovate police barracks and houses for privately managed recreation club in Warri, expressing regret that “we have no moral right to complain of neglect in the Niger Delta if little that comes to the region is abused by their leaders”.


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