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NJC Stops Promotion Of Justices Ekwo, Brikins-Okolosi Over Abuse Of Office, Issues Warning Letters

The National Judicial Council (NJC) has stopped the promotion of two Justices and reprimanded one other over abuse of office and misconduct.

This was disclosed in a statement on Thursday, May 16, 2024, issued by the council’s Director of Information, Soji Oye.

Oye said three judges involved are Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Justice G. B. Brikins-Okolosi of the Delta State High Court and Justice Amina Shehu of the Yobe State High Court.

He said the council resolved to issue warning letters to the three judges after they were found guilty of different degrees of misconduct, during the 105th plenary meeting of the council, held between May 15 and 16, 2024; under the Chairmanship of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola.

Oye stated that Ekwo and Brikins-Okolosi were barred from elevation to a higher Bench for two years and three years, respectively.

He said Ekwo is “warned for abuse of discretionary power of a judge by wrongly granting an ex parte order in suit no. FHC/ABJ/C/626/2023 Juliet Ebere Nwadi Gbaka & 2 Ors V Seplat Energy Plc & 12 Ors,

The statement reads: “The Hon. Judge is also barred from being elevated to a higher Bench for two years.

“Hon. Justice G. B. Brikins-Okolosi of Delta State High Court is also issued a warning for failure to deliver judgment within the stipulated period in Joseph Anene Okafor Vs Skye Bank, suit no. A/94/2010 after parties had filed and adopted their final Written Addresses.”

Justice Brikins-Okolosi will also not be elevated to a higher Bench for a period of three years,” the statement noted.

Oye said for Shehu, the council cautioned him for issuing Writ of Possession Conferring Title on the Defendant in suit no. YBS/HC/NNR/1cv/2020 when there was no subsisting judgment of any court to enable His Lordship to issue the Writ.

The NJC also recommended two reports written against judges of the Federal and State High Courts for further investigation.

Council at the meeting considered two Reports of its two Preliminary Complaints Assessment Committees that filtered 35 petitions written against Judges of the Federal and State High Courts and decided to empanel eight Committees to further investigate the petitions that were found meritorious by the Committees,” the statement added.

NJC Dismisses Petitions Against Judges

Furthermore, the council dismissed petitions against several judges “for lack of merit, evidence of misconduct, subjudice or that they were matters that could be appealed.”

The dismissed petitions were against Justices A. M. Liman, A. A. Okeke, D. E. Osiagor (Federal High Court); Justices S. B. Belgore, and Bello Kawu (High Court of the Federal Capital Territory), among others.

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