By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA—National Judicial Council, NJC, yesterday, recommended the appointment of Justice Tanko Muhammad as the substantive Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN.
The legal body okayed Justice Muhammad to assume full control of the judiciary after its emergency meeting in Abuja.
Muhammad, who is the most senior jurist on the Supreme Court bench, had since January 25, headed the judiciary as acting CJN.
He replaced the erstwhile CJN, Justice Walter Onnoghen, who was suspended from office by President Muhammadu Buhari following corruption allegations levelled against him by the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB.
The NJC, in a statement by its Director of Information, Mr. Soji Oye, said it equally recommended the appointment of eight other Heads of Court.
Oye revealed that a former President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Umaru Abdullahi, presided over the emergency meeting.
He said the council used the opportunity to implore state executives to commence immediate implementation of financial autonomy for state judiciary.
According to the statement, “the meeting, which was initially presided over by Mr. Justice Umaru Abdullahi considered and approved the recommendation of its Interview Committee that screened the two candidates presented by the Federal Judicial Service Commission to it for appointment as Chief Justice of Nigeria.
“Subsequently, the plenary of the meeting presided over by the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice I. T. Muhammad, recommended to the governors of Sokoto, Lagos, Anambra, Ebonyi, Niger, Taraba, Kano, and Jigawa states, eight successful candidates for appointment as chiefjudges and Grand Kadis for the states.”