- Newly appointed tribunal judges have been warned by Justice Tanko Muhammed, the acting CJN, to avoid partisanship
- Justice Muhammed said when confronted with temptations, the judges should always remember the oath they swore to
- The chief judge also charged them to always consider the constitution above every other thing in the discharge of their duties
The acting Chief Judge of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Tanko Muhammed, on Thursday, February 13, warned election tribunal judges to desist from any form of partisanship.
Muhammed gave this warning when he was swearing in 17 more judges that would be functioning as chairmen and member of election petition tribunals following the 2019 general elections, Vanguard reports.
Justice Muhammed asked the judges to keep strictly to the rule of law and consider the constitution as supreme when carrying out their duties.
He said: “I congratulate your lordships for being found worthy to be appointed as chairmen and members of the 2019 Election Petition Tribunals that will start sitting over the avalanche of petitions that will, expectedly, begin to stream in immediately after the general elections slated for February 16th and March 2, 2019 respectively.
“You have just taken an oath that has not only imposed a course of upright morale undertaking on you but equally looped you with destiny. Your participation in these tribunals at this crucial phase of the Nigerian judiciary is not by accident but a clear design of the Almighty Allah."
According to him, the national assignment before them is an enormous one that will literally put the contents of their conscience to test. He said the onus is on them to keep aloft the banner of honesty and integrity that the judiciary has painstakingly hoisted over the years.
“Your appointment to serve in these tribunals is well conceived, thus, you should do everything within your ability to justify this confidence.
“There is no doubt that you will be exposed to different forms of temptations and even blackmails, but you should know that all are aimed at testing your strength of character, honesty and integrity," he added.
The acting CJN also mentioned how temptations may come to the judges during their assignments, however, he asked them to always be mindful of the oath they have taken becuase it stands as as an uncompromising witness between them and their creator.
In his words: “It behoves you to willingly submit yourselves to the sanctity of the rule of law and supremacy of the Constitution in the discharge of your judicial functions.
“It is the general belief that elections held when the rule of law is too fragile, seldom lead to lasting democratic governance. You are enjoined to always strike a balance between justice and rule of law as you embark on this critical national assignment.”
Meanwhile, Legit.ng earlier reported that Justice Walter Onnoghen, the suspended CJN, arrived at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) for his trial.
The embattled CJN had failed to show up at the CCT since it commenced the trial.
Legit.ng also gathered that the CCT chairman, Danladi Umar, had on on Wednesday, February 13, ordered Onnoghen's arrest over his refusal to honour its invitation.
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