Month: October 2017

Govt Sets Up Panel On Prison Decongestion

The Federal Government, yesterday, said it has constituted a committee to develop a strategy for the deployment of technology for the decongestion of prisons in Nigeria and the implementation of Virtual Automated Case Management System.

Government said the committee, which will be chaired by the Chief Judge of the Federal Capital Territory, Justice Ishaq Bello, would aid the systematic decongestion of all the prisons in the country, as well as periodically analyze the number of detainees.

A statement signed by media aide to Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Salihu Isah, further disclosed that mandate of the committee included to advise the government on periodic visits to prisons for effective monitoring of the programme.

Other mandates include, “Liaise with relevant government agencies on the progress of prison decongestion programme. Organise a national summit on prison reform and decongestion in Nigeria.

“Conduct the audit of criminal cases pending in courts to enable the determination of the reasons for the delay. Undertake a legal audit of prison facilities in Nigeria with a view to identifying persons who should not be in prison.

“Carry out other duties as may be assigned to it by the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice.”

Isah stated that the committee would oversee the implementation of the Federal Executive Council’s directives to fast track decongestion of prisons.

He said: “This renewed efforts to put prisons across the nation under proper perspective is geared to mark a paradigm shift from previous attempts towards prison decongestion in the country.”

“Therefore, the Federal Ministry of Justice intends to realign the program to pay greater emphasis on true reforms of the prison and shifting of emphasis from retaining the services of external solicitors for awaiting trial inmates only to the Reformation, Rehabilitation and Reintegration (RRR) of the inmates.

“The stakeholders committee is also expected to come up with a roadmap for the prison decongestion program, providing a comprehensive user friendly approach for tackling the problems bedeviling the Nigerian prison system.

“It will also provide an insight into the past and present efforts of the Federal Ministry of Justice and other stakeholder institutions towards repositioning Nigeria prisons system”, the statement added.

Besides Justice Bello, other members of the committee are Mr. Dayo Akpata, Solicitor General of the Federation and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Justice (FMOJ), Comrade Salihu Othman Isah, Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Pius Oteh, Special Assistant to the President on Coordination and International Affairs, Mr. Sylvester Imhanobe, Special Assistant to the President on Research and Special Projects, Mr. Reuben Mathew Jego, Supreme Court of Nigeria, Lieutenant Colonel O.N. Adesuyi (Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) and Mr. Olawale Fapohunda of the Legal Resources Consortium.

Others are Mr. Clement Nwankwo, Executive Director, Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre (PLAC), Ms Melissa Omene, Office of the Vice President, Mr. Tunde Ikusaga, Legal Aid Council, Titilayo Samuel, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Patrick Enyeting of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF), Mr. Barkan Hadi, who is representative of the Director of Public Prosecution of the Federation, Mrs. Sarah H. Daniel, Citizens Rights Department of the FMOJ, Mr. Felix Ota-Okojie, Federal Justice Sector Reform Coordinating Committee (FJSRCC) of FMOJ, representatives of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) and Nigerian Prisons Service (NPS) and Mrs. Leticia Ayoola-Daniels of the FMOJ who serves as secretary of the committee that will be inaugrated on Tuesday by the AGF, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN.

Source: http://allafrica.com/stories/201710300354.html

ACCREDITATION FOR ELECTION MONITORS AND OBSERVERS FOR THE ANAMBRA STATE ELECTIONS

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) hereby invites registered Observer Groups and other interested Stakeholders whose activities have focus on Democracy, Governance and election that wish to observe the Anambra State Governorship Elections scheduled to hold on November, 2017 to visit the Commission’s website (http://www.inecnigeria.org/) for the application forms.

This is without prejudice to previous correspondences with the Commission as completion of the prescribed application form (EPMC 01) remains the only acceptable format for applying.

Interested observer groups should download, complete the application form (EPMC 01) and submit to Elections and Party Monitoring Department, INEC Headquarters, Maitama, Abuja along with other necessary documents (including evidence of past election observation) Observer groups should particularly note that all other information including Legal status, Federal Inland Revenue Service (Medium Tax Office) Certificate for NGOs as well as evidence of registration with the Civil Society Desk at INEC Headquarters, Abuja among others are to accompany their applications.

Any falsification of documents in the submissions will lead to automatic disqualification and possible prosecution.

The list of all successful observer groups for the election will subsequently be published in National Dailies and on the Commission’s website after the close of receipt of application (EPMC 01) which is August 18th, 2017. Letters of Accreditation will be issued to the successful observers.

ACCREDITATION OF ELECTION OBSERVERS

Successful observer groups would subsequently fill the accreditation form (EPMC 02) which is obtainable at the Elections and Party Monitoring Department, INEC Headquarters, Maitama, Abuja.

Observer groups should also note that passport photographs of their members to be deployed for the election would be required to be included along with the completed EPMC 02.

The closing date for receipt of EPMC 01 August 18th, 2017.

Please be guided accordingly

Download EMOC 1 form EMOC-1-ANAMBRA-2017

Download full advert INEC-2017-ANAMBRA-GOVERNORSHIP-ELECTION-TO-SERVE-AS-OBSERVER-copy

INDEPENDENT NATIONAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION (INEC)

Edo plans laws against human trafficking, on sensitisation campaign

The Edo State Government has disclosed plans to enact laws against human trafficking, as part of the ongoing measures to tackle illegal migration and drastically reduce the trade in human beings.

The state Attorney General/Commissioner for Justice and Chairperson of the Edo State Taskforce on Human Trafficking, Prof. Yinka Omorogbe, disclosed this at the flag-off of a state-wide sensitisation workshop on human trafficking and illegal migration, held at Idogbo, the Headquarters of Ikpoba Okha Local Government Area. Prof. Omorogbe said, “the state government is working on a law to ensure perpetrators who aid human trafficking and illegal migration are sentenced to jail without the option of fine. All hands must be on deck to support this drive in curtailing the menace, which has damaged the reputation of the state.” The Edo State Taskforce on Human Trafficking is a collaboration of the state government and international agencies such as the European Union. It is aimed at rebranding the state as an investment destination with human resources potential. Prof. Omorogbe said instead of youths to take to illegal migration, they should rather take advantage of the state government’s initiative on job creation, as the state is already setting up technical centres for skills acquisition. The Enogie of Ukhiri, a community in Ikpoba Okha Local Government Area, Bar. Godwin Aigbe, commended the state government’s efforts in organising the sensitisation workshop to enlighten youths on the dangers of human trafficking and illegal migration. Bar. Aigbe said “youths should take advantage of the government’s job initiative by registering on the state job portal, which will avail them better opportunities than embarking on treacherous illegal journey to Europe.”

Read more at: https://www.vanguardngr.com/2017/10/edo-plans-laws-human-trafficking-sensitisation-campaign/

MacArthur Foundation On Nigeria Grantees Training

LEDAP Nigeria attended a training held by MacArthur Foundation on Nigeria Grantees.

Date: 23rd- 26th October 2017

Venue: Ibeto Hotel Abuja, Nigeria

REPORT

 

Day 1

The first day of the training started with introduction of the grantees and the organizations they represent, after this the staff of the Foundation, were also introduced. Mr. Kole Shettima the Director, MacArthur Foundation, African office, gave a brief welcome speech.

Mr. Joshua Mintz; the vice president of the Foundation and Secretary to the Board instructed the grantees on the legal framework and requirements for getting a grant from the Foundation.  Mr. Mintz stated the conditions upon which the Foundation will consider making a grant to an applicant, emphasizing that the Foundation does not fund Lobbying and Political activities, he gave instances of what could be considered as lobbying or political activity. He further stated the need for Grantees to always send their annual reports back to the Foundation as the foundation is accountable to the IRS. He further stated that the Foundation will investigate any diversion of fund and that there are consequences for diversion of fund.

The next session which was on Grant Processing was taken by Phillis Hollice; the senior grants manager of the Foundation. She educated the participants on the procedure for applying for a grant and on how and when to file annual reports. She differentiated between Public Charity organizations and Expenditure Responsibility Organizations and the different requirements for filing annual reports for each category. She advised the Grantees that if at the completion of the project, there is any leftover money, they need not file the final report yet but can contact the programs manager for an extension. She further advised the Grantees to keep receipts of all transactions. Also she said that because of the fluctuations in exchange rate, the Grantees can either make their reports using the rate at the time the grant was made, the rate at the time of spending or at the average rate.

The Foundation’s senior communications officer; Meredith klein, took the last session for the day. She stated that the  Foundation is committed to being open and honest about the work they do and the Grantees they partner with as such she enjoined the Grantees to always share with the Foundation press releases, reports, and other materials that mention MacArthuur prior to publication. Furthermore she stated that the Communications staff of the Foundation, are always available to assist Grantees with communications needs or questions that may arise in conjunction with the public release of materials and products relating to any Grant from the Foundation. Also, that grantees can send videos of the work they are doing to the Foundation and these will in turn be posted on the Foundation’s website and youtube channel. The participants were encouraged to follow the Foundation on social media and to tag them on their posts relating to the projects they are doing so the Foundation can either; share, repost or retweet those information. The Grantees were required to seek the permission of the Foundation before using its name and logo.

 

Day 2:

Exercise; THEORY OF CHANGE.

The participants were introduced to the voice and teeth module of Theory of Change, the voice represent, CSOs, and other interest groups who demand change from the state. The Teeth stand for the state actors, who will actually effect the change. The Grantees were grouped according to the projects they are working on. Legal defence and assistance project-LEDAP was grouped with other grantees working on the Criminal Justice project, this included; FIDA, CLEEN Foundation, CSLS, AND Partner West Africa. The Facilitators from MacArthur foundation, CAMRI and EnCompas explained the term, Theory Of Change and talked the participants through developing a standard Theory Of Change for their respective projects.

After the lunch break, the Granteess were given a copy of their theory of change which they have already submitted to the foundation and were asked to write out their outcomes, impact and assumptions on different sticker notes and go to the wall where the different modules have been pasted and try to map the sticker notes to similar outcomes and impacts on the wall where it most fit. The assumptions were to be mapped to another board on the wall. The participants did this and the facilitator assigned to the group was on hand to discuss the observations of the grantees and answer questions. It was observed from the mappings that there were areas where a lot of grantees were working on and other areas where little or no grantee was working on. It was also observed that all the grantees were working towards achieving the impact as every grantee mapped on to the impact on the module.

The facilitators encouraged collaboration amongst grantees working on the same projects.

Day 3:

Exercise; MONITORING PLAN

The day started with a recap of the session on theory of change. The Facilitator posited the following on developing a Theory of Change:

  1. Theory of change is never static, it evolves and changes can always be made even as the project progresses.
  2. It is always better to put the project in graphics so that the funder at first glance can get a picture of the proposal.
  3. It is important to first think of the vision for the project (impact); Design and build.

The next session was on INDICATORS. The Facilitator gave pointers on setting indicators. He gave the 3.5 data sources for Indicators as; (a) National polling (b) Media monitoring, (c) Interview with key actors, and (d) Document review. The participants were given a monitoring plan and asked to complete the tables based on their Theory of Change or their proposal for those who didn’t have their theory of change yet. The participants were then asked to form a group of two organizations each and discuss the monitoring plans they have come up with. Further the grantees were given a task of looking through their projects on the modules and the indicators that have been set out for each outcome and then formulate for each group two questions and two observations, a facilitator was assigned to each group to discuss these questions and observations, after which the cards were collated.

Day 4:

Exercise; INDICATORS

The grantees were asked to write out the indicators from their monitoring plans on sticky notes and go to the board to map it to the impact where it fit most, also the participants were asked to write out on blue sticky notes data source where they can provide one so that they can be reached later to get those data. After the lunch break, the grantees who have been working with the Foundation were asked to tell their experience in monitoring and evaluation to encourage the newer and prospective grantees. From this exercise it was evident that monitoring and evaluation at first seem to be an uphill task but with the help and encouragement from various mentors from the Foundation and periodic trainings from the Foundation it becomes simplified. Furthermore it was gathered that it is better to start monitoring and evaluation as soon as the project kicks off and continue as the project progresses, as the information is still fresh in mind rather than leaving it till the completion of the project when some information might have faded.

Mr. Dayo Olaide, of the Foundation gave final words of encouragement to the participants to not give up because it seemed difficult at first, that with constant practice and the trainings that the Foundation offers, they will soon become monitoring and evaluation experts.

We went for lunch and dismissed therefrom.

Overall, the training was a success and very instructive. It was obvious that the Foundation is really interested and committed to the growth of its Grantees and invests in that growth.

 

 

 

Army apologises to family of Okada rider beaten to death by soldier in Lagos

The Nigerian Army through its counsel, Mr Bola Oyebanji, has apologised to the family of a commercial motorcyclist, Mr Abubakar Alhaji, who was allegedly beaten to death by Sgt. Taiwo Owoeye in Lagos.

Oyebanji, who tendered the army’s apology at the Presidential Panel investigating alleged human rights abuses by the Armed Forces said the culprit has been arrested and detained for murder.

He said, “The Nigerian Army has detained Sgt. Owoeye for murder, we find the matter reprehensible and condemnable.

“However, this is a single act which showed that the sergeant was on his own.

“We apologise and sympathise with the family of the deceased.”

Head of the panel, Justice Biobel Goodwill, of the Court of Appeal, also condoled with the brother of the deceased who was present at the hearing.

Goodwill after tendering the apology, told Mr Lucas Koyejo, a counsel for the National Human Rights Commission to follow up with the military trial of Owoeye to ensure that justice was done and to liaise with the victim’s family.

Alhaji’s brother, Mr Salihu Mojahid, in his testimony before the panel, shed light on the series of events leading to his brother’s death.

Mojahid said, “On Feb. 27, my brother called Abubakar Alhaji, a commercial motorcyclist, took a passenger to Maroko Roundabout beside Myhoung Barracks, Yaba, Lagos.

“He parked at the back of a vehicle and unknown to him someone was in the vehicle, the person in the vehicle reversed and bystanders shouted that a commercial motorcyclist is behind him.

“My brother knocked on the car to alert the owner that he parked behind him, the owner of the car came out and he was Sgt. Taiwo Owoeye.

“Owoeye, who was in full military uniform, slapped my brother twice and after he fell down, and he started kicking my brother several times in his stomach while he was on the ground.

“Bystanders tried apologising to him but he refused to listen to them till my brother fell unconscious.

“When my brother became unconscious, he wanted to leave and the bystanders said ‘do you not see the state of the person you have beaten up?

“Sgt. Owoeye told them ‘let him die, even if he dies, nothing will happen’.

“Fellow commercial motorcyclists and military men took him to a hospital in the barracks, he was vomiting blood till the next day.

“My brother died on Feb. 28 and the Commandant ordered the arrest of Sergeant Owoeye.”

Mojahid claimed that his brother’s corpse was not released to the family until May 25 which was four months after the incident.

“Anytime we asked the military for his corpse, they said that they needed to do an autopsy, till now we have not received an autopsy result.”

Source: http://punchng.com/army-apologises-to-family-of-okada-rider-beaten-to-death-by-soldier-in-lagos/

Drunken policeman shoots farmer over N15,000 in Delta

A farmer in Ubulu Uku community, Delta State, Ijeh Chukwuedo, is recuperating at the Federal Medical Centre, Asaba, after undergoing a surgery to remove bullets allegedly lodged in his stomach and thigh.

The 23-year-old was reportedly returning home from his farm on Sunday when a drunken policeman, identified simply as Sergeant Emeka, gunned him down along Ubulu-Issele-Uku Road.

PUNCH Metro learnt that Emeka and two other policemen had wanted to pick up Chukwuedo over N15,000 wages he collected from a man, identified as Funaya.

The cops were said to have been led to the scene by Funaya.

It was learnt that the policemen and Funaya stood by the roadside waiting for Chukwuedo to emerge from the farm.

Our correspondent gathered that the moment Chukwuedo, who was riding a motorcycle, surfaced, Funaya alerted the cops.

He was flagged down, but he reportedly attempted to evade arrest.

When it appeared that they might  not catch up with him, Emeka reportedly opened fire, which hit him in the stomach and thigh.

A resident, who did not want his name in print, said Chukwuedo was rushed to a hospital while the trigger-happy policeman was arrested.

He said, “Sergeant Emeka is well known in Ubulu Uku community. He is a drunk and we learnt he was drunk that day when he shot Ijeh (Chukwuedo). Other policemen with him blamed him for shooting the young man. People wanted to mob him, but he was rescued. He has been taken into custody. Ijeh is admitted to the FMC, Asaba.”

Chukwuedo was said to be asleep when our correspondent demanded to speak with him on Tuesday.

However, the Coordinator of a human rights body, Behind Bars Intervention, Harrison Gwamnishu, told PUNCH Metro on the telephone that Funaya had contracted Chukwuedo to work on a farmland.

He said Funaya gave the victim N15,000 for the work, which he failed to complete as agreed.

The coordinator stated that Funaya, in company with a friend, Tochukwu, confronted Chukwuedo on Saturday and asked him to refund the money.

Gwamnishu said, “They had Iwu festival in the community on Saturday. Funaya and Tochukwu went to Chukwuedo’s house to collect the money. Chukwuedo said he would not refund the money since he had already started the work Funaya gave him and promised to complete it after the festival.

“He said Tochuwku angrily asked him to pay the money and he scolded him for meddling in a matter that did not concern him. The disagreement led to a fight.“The following day, Funaya led some policemen to arrest Chukwuedo and they waited for him to come out of his (Chukwuedo’s) farm. As he came out from the farm on his motorcycle, they asked him to stop.

“Because that road is usually quiet and for fear of being killed, he tried to escape. One of the policemen, Sergeant Emeka, shot him. He was injured in the stomach and thigh. The other policemen took him to a hospital in the community. He was referred to the FMC, Asaba, where he underwent a surgery.”

Gwamnishu said the victim’s family had spent about N50,000 on his treatment, adding that the police only sent N10,000 as medical bill.

“They have not come to check him at the FMC. The policeman that shot him should be punished accordingly. He is a drunk and is not fit to be carrying a gun,” he added.

When contacted, the Delta State Commissioner of Police, Zanna Ibrahim, said, “I have not been fully briefed. I will find out.”

Subsequent calls made to his line later went unanswered.

Source: http://punchng.com/drunken-policeman-shoots-farmer-over-n15000-in-delta/

Lagos CJ launches polls’ appeal tribunal

The Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Opeyemi Oke, has inaugurated the Election Appeal Tribunal to hear and determine appeals from the Local Government Election Tribunal.

The appeal tribunal, which was inaugurated on Monday, began sitting yesterday at the High Court complex at Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS) Annex.Speaking at the ceremony, Justice Oke said the inauguration was important to the completion of the electoral process concerning the local government election on July 22.

Members of the appeal tribunal are: Justice Grace Onyeabo (chairman), Justice Iyabo Kasali, Justice Surajudeen Onigbanjo, Justice Owolabi Dabiri and Justice Kudirat Jose.

Describing members of the committee as men and women of integrity, Justice Oke said the oaths they took remained their guide.

The chief judge urged them to see their assignment as a call to service.

The Registry of the Appeal Tribunal is at the Fast Track Registry of the High Court at Igbosere in Lagos.

Source: https://thenigerialawyer.com/lagos-cj-launches-polls-appeal-tribunal/

All eyes on NJC’s corruption cases monitoring group

The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) and Chairman, National Judicial Council (NJC), Justice Walter Onnoghen, recently constituted a 15-member committee known as the Corruption and Financial Crimes Cases Trial Monitoring Committee (COTRIMCO).

Former president of the court of appeal, Justice Ayo Salami was named as the Chairman.Their mandate is to monitor judges and courts handling corruption and financial crimes cases across the country.

This was also at the heels of directive by the CJN to the heads of courts to establish special courts in their jurisdictions solely for the purpose of handling corruption and financial crimes trials.

Some Nigerians believe that the decision was necessitated by allegations of corruption against the judiciary by mostly the federal government and recently the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), which tagged the judiciary as second most corrupt institution in Nigeria.

However, opinion and questions had been raised on the sincerity of NJC in its resolve to fight corruption, the impact which COTRIMCO will make on the independence of the judiciary or courts and if the move is not aimed at appeasing the Presidency, who had hitherto complained about the non-cooperation of the judiciary in its fight against corruption among others.

But speaking on this, current Vice President, Nigeria Bar Association, Monday Ubani, said there is no doubt about NJC’s sincerity. The point is that every Nigerian must support the fight against corruption. He said it is sad to believe that, the country is at its present state as a result of corruption.

Ubani said: “The fact is that the people appointed on the board of the committee are notable lawyers and retired judges of integrity. So, the issue is not sincerity, rather, everyone must make effort in this country to support the fight against corruption, because where corruption has kept us today should not be a place any Nigerian, irrespective of position, should be happy about.“It is not an enviable position at all. So we all should ensure the elimination of this cankerworm and at the same time speak up when we find things are not done according to the rule of law.

“The step the NJC has taken is very commendable and anyone that love the country must also applaud it. Firstly, it announced special court to try corruption cases, meaning those judges would not be bugged down by other cases in court rather than corruption cases. This will also hasten up conclusion of cases within a limited period of time, unlike what we use to experience where some cases lasted for years”.

Ubani also said that since the NJC has resolved to wake up, the sector will begin to witness remarkable developments in handling of cases, expressing the hope that corruption will reduce maximally in the system.

“Now that they have gone further to create a monitoring committee to look at trial of corrupt cases, it will mitigate incessant complaints of compromise and un-seriousness in the handling of corrupt cases. Now that the judiciary has begun to do the needful, I tell you, corruption will maximally reduce. Judges will be careful not to give those controversial decisions that for the ordinary mind, you will know something was fundamentally wrong, he declared.Also senior advocate of Nigeria, Chief Ifedayo Adedipe, believe there must be good reason for setting up of the committee because it is made up of credible judicial officers.

His words: “There must always be sincerity on the part of the CJN, most especially the personalities in the committee. But for now, all I can say about the committee is that it has no statutory power. It cannot discipline any judge over any misdeed, rather it is just to look around and probably report to NJC observations during trials. So far a committee with such caliber of legal luminaries will be objective and quite mature and not sentimental in its reports”.

Adedipe applauded the step taken by the CJN, saying: “It is an evidence of commitment to the fight against corruption and not to appease anybody. The idea will ensure that all judicial officers handling corruption cases discharge their duties in accordance to the Administration of Criminal Justice Acts. Also, the monitoring committee will not hamper the independence of the judiciary because it has no supervisory jurisdiction over the courts”.

According to him, the NJC cannot come up with such committee if they are not sincere. What is important, he noted, is the support of the public in their assignment.

“Anything that the government or any institution might come up with in order to facilitate the effectiveness of the administration of criminal justice, not only in the fight against corruption, but generally to ensure smooth and efficient administration of justice, should be supported.

“There may be apprehension in the beginning, but one thing is that, it is a positive development to the judiciary. It will not have any negative effect on the sector,” he assured. Another lawyer, from Jirey & Greys Attorneys, Lagos, Michael Ogunjobi, said the sincerity of purpose of NJC cannot be as a result of pressure from any quarters.

According to him, it is a continuation of what the current CJN met on ground. The former CJN, he noted had set up similar committee to checkmate the excesses of judicial officers.

His words: “So the broad composition of COTRIMCO is desirable in view of the far reaching tentacles of corruption in our polity. But then, the resolutions of COTRIMCO are subject to NJC’s final ratification.

“COTRIMCO must be appreciated as an appendage of NJC, being a Federal Executive Body created by Section 153, CFRN 1999, with broad membership both from the Bar and the Bench as set out in Paragraph 20 of Part One of the Third Schedule to CFRN 1999. Remarkably, the NJC in line with its mandate as encapsulated in Paragraph 21 of Part One of the Third Schedule to CFRN 1999 introduced a National Judicial Policy in April 2016, according premium to judicial accountability, while the CJN inaugurated a Judicial Ethics Committee headed by Kutigi, which likewise had members from the Bar and the Bench”.

He explained that section 158 (1) CFRN 1999 affirmed the independence of NJC in carrying out its mandate, as affirmed in OPENE v. NJC & ORS. (2011) LPELR-4795 (CA), hence all committees of same can’t act contrary to the benchmark.

But Dr Tunji Abayomi in his reaction said NJC cannot monitor judges and suggested that an independent body should be created to even monitor the NJC.

He said: “The NJC has not taken a final position on the issue. The NJC has set up a committee to monitor corruption cases. But if you want to monitor judges, it should not be NJC. NJC itself needs to be monitored. There must be an independent institution capable of monitoring judges discreetly.

Speaking on the recent allegation of bribery against Justice Musa Anka, another senior advocate, Jimoh Lasisi, said: “If there is proof that a Judge received N200, 000 bribe NJC can justify its decision to sack him. The amount of the bribe is not a relevant fact in arriving at its decision that the judge misconducted himself.”

In the same vein, another lawyer, Evans Ufeli, said: “Corruption in Nigerian judicial system has rendered the tool of justice prostrate. Recently the NJC sacked Justice Anka for allegedly receiving a bribe of N200, 000. It was reported that the judge collected the bribe from one Zubairu Abdumalik in order to deliver judgment in his favour.

“It really doesn’t matter how much was received as gratification once proper investigation reveals that a judge collected money or any other forms of gratification to turn justice on its head. The requisite disciplinary measure must be taken to the fullest against such judge by the NJC. It is a weak argument to concoct that the sum of N200, 000 is a negligible figure and therefore the judge should be spared.

“This will amount to a travesty of justice and therefore throw away our efforts to keep the stream of justice clean at all cost. For other judges who have one or two petitions against them under the investigation, each petition should be dealt with holistically so that the right findings can be made at the end of the day”.

However, reacting to the alleged UNODC reports on the judiciary, Ikechukwu Ikeji, said the report has been mis-understood. He also applauded the efforts of the NJC to stamp out corruption in the judiciary and indeed, the society.

“There is need to correct the impression that UNODC tagged the judiciary as second most corrupt institution in Nigeria. What they said was not that judiciary was ranked second. It was ranked third. Prosecution was ranked second behind the Police.

Source:https://guardian.ng/features/law/all-eyes-on-njcs-corruption-cases-monitoring-group/