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Dismissed Appeal Court justice sues govt

Posted by By Ibe Uwaleke, Judicial Correspondent on 2005/05/17 | Views: 448 |

Dismissed Appeal Court justice sues govt


ONE of the two justices of the Court of Appeal dismissed from office recently, Okwuchukwu Opene, has filed a suit at a Federal High Court, Abuja, to challenge his sack.

ONE of the two justices of the Court of Appeal dismissed from office recently, Okwuchukwu Opene, has filed a suit at a Federal High Court, Abuja, to challenge his sack.

Opene was dismissed along with Justice D.A. Adeniyi for alleged corrupt practices. Their sack was recommended by the National Judicial Commission (NJC) after an investigation.

The allegation of corruption was levelled against the two judges by one Nicholas Ukachukwu who accused them of taking bribe during hearing of an appeal over the 2003 election in Anambra South Zone.

President Olusegun Obasanjo at the weekend endorsed the dismissal of the two justices as recommended by the NJC against the advice of the Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Chief Akinlolu Olujinmi.

The minister's advice was based on allegation of irregularities in the investigation of the two judges.

In the motion Opene brought ex-parte, he is asking the court to:


stop President Obasanjo, NJC and the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) from dismissing him from office;

declare that the recommendation of dismissal by NJC and AGF is unconstitional, null and void;

give an order setting aside the removal or dismissal from office of the applicant based on the recommendation of NJC; and

give an order of certiorari removing the investigation's finding and recommendation of the panel of inquiry of NJC to the court for the purpose of being quashed.
In an eight-paragraph motion paper, the applicant claimed that the NJC set up a three-man panel of inquiry to investigate the petition of Ukachukwu making allegation of bribery and corruption against him in respect of an election petition appeal.

According to him, the terms of reference of the panel of inquiry of NJC was to investigate the allegations of bribery and corruption made against him by the petitioner, arguing that the said panel recommended him for dismissal.

This action is yet to be heard by the court.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.