NJC removes Onnoghen from membership list

The National Judicial Council (NJC) has removed the name and image of convicted Justice Walter Onnoghen from its current members’ list on its website.

Onnoghen was last week convicted by the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) for violating the Code of Conduct and Tribunal Act, by refusing to declare the five accounts he has with the Standard Chattered Bank, located at Wuse II, Abuja.

Apart from his removal from the office of the CJN and chairman, National Judicial Council (NJC), the Tribunal, in its judgement also ordered the forfeiture of the money in all the accounts, running into millions in both naira, dollars and pounds sterling and he was also barred from holding public office in the next ten years.

Before the judgment in the six-count charge of false and non declaration of assets preferred against Onnoghen by the federal government, President Muhammadu Buhari had suspended him as CJN and appointed Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad as acting CJN, following an exparte order to that effect by the Chairman of the three-member panel of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), Danladi Umar.

The Council had, last Thursday, approved the extension of the appointment of Justice Muhammad as acting CJN for another three months following a recommendation sent by President Muhammadu Buhari.

On its website, the NJC listed the acting CJN as the acting chairman of the council.

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The position of the deputy chairman of the council is still vacant, but what has being the tradition of the Council is that the next most senior Justice of the Supreme Court will be appointed the Deputy Chairman.

The 23-man member list of the NJC includes acting chairman of the Council, Justice Muhammad; President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa; retired Justice of the Supreme Court and former chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission, Justice Emmanuel Ayoola; retired Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Sunday Akintan; and a former President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Umaru Abdullahi; retired Justice of the Court of Appeal, Justice, V.O.A Omage.

The member list also has the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Adamu Abdu-Kafarati; President, National Industrial Court of Nigeria, Justice Babatunde Adejumo; Chief Judge, High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Justice Ishaq Bello.

The Chief Judge of Oyo State, Justice Munta Abiola; Chief Judge of Borno State, Justice Kashim Zannah; Chief Judge of Imo State, Pascal Nnadi; Chief Judge of Delta State, Marshal Umukoro are also on the list.

Grand Kadi, Sharia Court of Appeal, Kwara State Grand Kadi Mohammed Abdulkadir; and President, Customary Court of Appeal, Plateau State, Justice Julia Kyentu; President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Mr Paul Usoro (SAN); former NBA President, Abubakar Mahmoud (SAN); NBA members, Dr Muiz Banire (SAN);, Damien Dodo (SAN) and Efe Etomi.

Retired public servant, Mrs Rakiya Ibrahim; a retired Permanent Secretary, Mrs. R.I Inga and Secretary to the Council, Ahmed Gambo Saleh complete the list.

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