There seems to be another crises that is set to rock the nation’s Judiciary once more. In recent times, it has not been the best of times for the judicial arm of government in the country. This is as the former Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, was unceremoniously booted out of office after he was convicted by the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) over a failure to declare his assets. Justice Tanko Mohammed was appointed as a replacement to Onnoghen who was first suspended from his role as the CJN before he was finally convicted.
However, the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) Tanko Muhammad, who was appointed to serve as a replacement to Onnoghen has found himself in a quagmire of sorts as yet another huge scandal may just be hitting the Judiciary again. This is just as the acting CJN has been charged to court over an alleged falsification of his age.
The acting CJN was sued because of an alleged age falsification by a 46-year-old businessman, Mr Tochi Michael. Mr Tochukwu in his suit had made a claim saying that the CJN falsified his date of birth from December 31, 1950 which was contained in all his official records, including that of WAEC, to December 31, 1953 upon his appointment as a judicial officer. He also asked that the acting CJN should be prosecuted on account of committing the offence of perjury and on any other order which the court may deem fit.
However Mr Sam Ologunorisa (SAN), who is the counsel for the CJN gave information to the court that the plaintiff and his counsel were not available, while adding that it was looking like the plaintiff and his counsel were “running away” from the suit which they filed, while stressing that the court should take action and do the needful in the interest of justice.
A report by the Punch has Mr Sam Ologunorisa (SAN) saying the following:
“We filed a notice of preliminary objection, a counter-affidavit and a written address. We urge the court to deem it fit that the originating summons has been argued. We have to look at Exhibit III of the originating summons. We urge the court to dismiss the suit. The case is meant to scandalise the CJN.”
Justice Danlami Senchi who had adjourned the case until till Friday, said the plaintiff will be still be given another opportunity to provide proof of the allegation.
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