CJN Appeals To Judiciary Workers To Call Off Strike
The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad has appealed to the judicial workers to call off their strike.
He stated this on Wednesday when he met with some national and local officials of the Judiciary Staff Union of NigeriaJUSUN) in his chamber at the Supreme Court.
The meeting was to address and explore solutions and ways to mitigate the impact of the ongoing strike in the judiciary.
A statement by the Special Assistant to the CJN on Media and Publicity Strategy, Ahuraka Isah, indicated that the meeting lasted a few minutes.
At the end of the meeting which lasted a few minutes, the cjn appealed to the union officials to call off the strike while the process of making the state governments to obey executive order 10 and various court judgments on the autonomy of the judiciary are being implemented.
Justice Muhammed added that the unintended sufferers of this strike are better imagined than seen.
The National Treasurer of JUSUN, Jimoh Musa, who led the delegation on behalf of the union president stated that only three out of the 19 members of the National Executive Council (NEC) of the union were present at the meeting.
Members of the union commenced a nationwide strike on Tuesday in protest against the refusal of the state governments to enforce financial autonomy in the judiciary.
The judiciary workers faulted the state authorities for their action which they said contravened the provisions of the 1999 Constitution.
A Federal High Court had on January 13, 2014, confirmed the autonomy of the judiciary, in line with the spirit and letters of the Constitution.
The judgment was followed by a Memorandum of Understanding between JUSUN and relevant stakeholders, under which the parties agreed to give effect to the judgement of the court.
In May 2020, President Muhammadu Buhari also signed the Executive Order 10 which sought to treat the funds due to the state judiciaries as a first-line charge and require that the funds be paid directly to the heads of court concerned.
In its reaction, the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) described the action of the state authorities as one that does not augur well for the nation’s constitutional democracy.
While the NBA said the industrial action by the judiciary workers was commendable, it decried that the strike came at the wrong time when the courts were trying to play catch-up for time lost to the COVID-19 pandemic.