• Friday, June 21, 2024
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Nigerian politicians playing Russian roulette with the judiciary — Olumide Apata

I am a cancer survivor, says Olumide Akpata, LP governorship aspirant

Olumide Akpata, former chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) says there is deliberate attempts among the political class to capture the judiciary in the country.

Akpata made the submission at an International Bar Association (IBA) gathering recently.

In a video of the event posted on X, Akpata said the trend was yielding result for the political class, stressing that during his tenure as head of the bar what he saw in NBA’s committee’s was frightening.

“Forgive us for fixating on this problem because the IBA as the global legal voice has a role to play in what I call Judiciary capture.

“I find out that there is a deliberate attempt by the political class to capture the judiciary and it has serious consequences for the rule of law in Nigeria.

“It is deliberate and it is intentional and it is achieving result for them. As the President of the bar, I sat on NBA committee’s and what I saw there was bizarre”, Akpata said.

Read also: Former NBA President, Olumide Akpata, bags African Legal Icon Award

Speaking further, the former NBA chairman
stated that the process of appointments of Judges in Nigeria was ridiculous, noting that it
would be difficult for a good Judge to emerge.

He supported recent comment by Chidi Odinkalu former chairman of the Nigeria Human Rights Commission, who had recently complaining about lopsided appointments of Judges and other corruption in the country’s judiciary.

He complained about the poor remuneration of Judges and appealed to IBA to help speak out about the situation to salvage the judiciary in Nigeria.

According to him, “What Chidi Odinkalu has pointed out is very clear, it is a major problem, that we are confronted with in Nigeria. Nigeria is the largest black nation on earth and what happens in Nigeria has implications world over.

“Just like Chidi Odinkalu pointed out to us; a good Judge would only emerge through that process by luck. The way Judiciary appointments is done in Nigeria is ridiculous.

Read also: Nigerian politicians struggle to tame social media generation

“I hope the IBA should ascertain if what I say is correct and lend it voice. Firstly, the process of appointments of judges. Secondly, the impoverishment of Judges in Nigeria, remuneration.

“I don’t want to tell you what they earn, meanwhile they are still considered as members of the upper echelons of the society.

“Their kids wants to go to Cambridge, Harvard, but they can’t afford it, but i want to assure you that their kids are in Oxford, your guss is good as mine; how did those kids get their?

The former NBA chairman comment came amid recent revelations by retiring Supreme Court Justice Musa Muhammad Dattijo about the corruption in the judiciary and absolute power of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN).

Read also: Only 10 Supreme Court justices left as Musa Dattijo retires

Dattijo had said a number of respected senior members of the bar, who cited the cases of Ahmed Lawan, the former President of the Senate and the Imo Governorship appeals, claim that decisions of even the apex court had become unpredictable.