…bars Journalist from attendance
By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA-Sequel to the directive of the National Judicial Council, NJC, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Mariam Aloma Muhktar, Friday, elevated Justice Ifeoma Jumbo-Ofor to the Appeal Court Bench.
However, the CJN, who was visibly embittered by plethora of criticisms that trailed her earlier refusal to administer oath of office on the new Appeal Court Judge owing to her declared state of origin, barred journalists from covering the event.
It would be recalled that the CJN had on November 5, declined to swear-in Justice Jombo-ofor alongside eleven other newly appointed Justices of the appellate court.
Though Justice Jombo-Ofor, who on that day, came to the apex court auditorium, venue of the swearing-in, with her friends and relatives, ab-initio got the nod of both the NJC and President Goodluck Jonathan to ascend to the appellate court, however, she was directed to vacate the seat reserved for the new Judges, barely few minutes to the swearing-in ceremony.
It was the contention of her adversaries that going by the prevailing judicial policy in the country, vis-à-vis the Federal Character principle, she was not qualified to take a slot reserved for Abia state on the appellate court bench.
The petitioners had argued that though she is currently serving under the Abia state judiciary, she lacked the requisite locus to ascend on the slot of the state since she was originally from Anambra, notwithstanding the fact that she is married to a man from Abia state.