Musdapher calls for reforms as he bids farewell to Judiciary

Justice Dahiru Musdapher on Friday bowed out as the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) having attained the retirement age of 70 years.

At a valedictory service held in his honor, Justice Musdapher advocated the creation of an Independent body other than the National Judicial Council, for the discipline and removal of Judges.

Justice Musdapher noted that investigation of allegation of impropriety against judicial officers is too cumbersome for the NJC which is saddled with other responsibilities.

He said the system which has been adopted by most Commonwealth countries, is in a better position to deal with issues of discipline and removal as opposed to an institution that is largely managed by those it is supposed to regulate.

Present at the occasion were governors of Kogi, Bauchi, Ekiti and Jigawa also present were retired justices of the Supreme court and the Appellate court ,members of the Nigerian Bar Association, the body of senior Advocates, federal lawmakers, traditional rulers, the mother of the retiring chief justice and other well wishers.

Soon after Justice Musdapher filed into the court to perform his last duty as the head of the nations judiciary, he swore-in two newly appointed justices of the supreme court, Justice Musa Dantijo Muhammed and Justice Clara Ogunbiyi.

Justice Musdapher outlined some of his achievements as the chief justice, one of which is the 47 amendments sought as part of the reform of the judiciary, he urged the National Assembly to be pro-active in passing the laws.

The outgoing chief justice also gave a score card of the Supreme Court at the end of the 2012 legal year.

He also made a case for another body to be responsible for judicial discipline and removal as the role has become too cumbersome for the National Judicial Commission.

His Lordship then bowed out of the court as the Chief Justice of Nigeria, having served thirty-three of his forty-four years career on the bench.

Delays in handling corruption cases

The outgoing Chief Justice of Nigeria explained the reasons why his directive to all courts in the country to dispose of all corruption cases within the last six months were not achieved.

According to him, the major reason is the cumbersome nature of the various charge sheets which contains so many counts charges making it difficult to prosecute.

Justice Musdapher blames the anti-graft agencies who arrest and charge suspected offenders before concluding investigations making them largely unprepared for trial.

He also blames defence lawyers whom he says have perfected strategies for stalling the trial processes via the filing of pointless interlocutory appeals.

This he said has necessitated the need for a speedy amendment of the  relevant  sections of the constitutions to block all loop holes  for unjustified invocation of the right of appeal.

 

Insecurity in Nigeria dominates Council of State meeting

The insecurity in Nigeria on Thursday was the issue that dominated the National Council of States meeting presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan at the State House in Abuja.

Present at the meeting were past Nigerian leaders including Shehu Shagari, Ernest Shenekan and Abdulsalami Abubakar as well as the governors of the 36 states of the federation or their deputies.

There was no formal briefing after the meeting but sources said that National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki briefed the meeting on security situation in Plateau state and the efforts being put in place so far to nip it in the bud as well as the situation in Mali and its effect on neighbouring countries including Nigeria.

The Belgore Report on constitutional matters and the National Honours list were also discussed during the meeting

The 36 state governors met last night in Abuja to take a common position on the incessant violence in parts of the country ahead of the council meeting.

Officials close to the forum said the governors were discussing the level of insecurity especially in the North, and were considering taking a common position ahead of the Council of State meeting.

The governors’ meeting was summoned in the wake of the latest bloodshed in Plateau State, where dozens of people were in killed in attacks on villages, which also led to the deaths of Senator Gyang Dantong and state legislator Gyang Fulani.

Last night’s meeting was held at the Rivers’ State Governors’ Lodge in Abuja.

The governors’ meeting was attended by governors of Katsina, Kaduna, Borno, Zamfara, Kebbi, Taraba, Jigawa, Kogi, Enugu, Delta, Lagos, Ekiti, Ondo, Ebonyi, Abia, Plateau, Rivers, Bayelsa, Anambra, Gombe and Adamawa states. Deputy governors of Kano, Nasarawa, Niger, Kwara, Ogun and Yobe states were also in attendance.

.

 

Another bomb factory discovered in Kogi state

Another Boko Haram bomb factory was discovered in Kogi state in the Adavi Local Government Area, the Nigeria military confirmed.

General Alphonsus Chukwu told newsmen that the discovery was made as a result of intelligence gathering. The bomb making factory is the third to be uncovered in the central state in the last two weeks.

Chukwu said one of the alleged Boko Haram suspects arrested in previous raids had profered information that led to the discovery of this latest bomb factory, located behind a primary school at Ogaminana, in the central axis of the state.

Items recovered from the hideout include security metal detectors, bullet proof vests, gas cylinder, already made bombs and ammunition.

Members of the task force are yet to make any arrests in connection to the incident. General Chukwu has assured residents, however, that security has been tightened in the statect and forces are on guard against possible acts of terrorism during the Easter weekend.

Security has been beefed up across the nation to ward off possible attacks by the Boko Haram sect.

Earlier this week, the United States and the United Kingdom issued warnings to their citizens, urging them to steer clear of the north as the sect has been known to strike those regions, especially during Christian religious holidays.

Security agents discover bomb factory in Kogi State

Security operatives in Kogi State today discovered a bomb factory suspected to belong to members of the radical sect Boko Haram, agencies reported today.

Unexploded Improvised Explosive Devices, five hand grenades and other bomb-making component were discovered in factory, an uncompleted four-bedroom building in Kabba in central Kogi state.

According to reports, the team of State Security Service agents, police officers and soldiers had raided the building at about 2p.m., following up on intelligence reports gathered during prior investigations.

An anti-bomb squad was on hand to safely recover the explosives and other components, such as NPK fertiliser and other chemicals used in IEDs, as well as cable wires, a transistor radio and other tech devices.

Mr. Cletus Nzeji, the Commander for the anti-bomb squad said the recovered items would be taken into evidence and further analysed.

He confirmed that the explosives recovered had been of a high calibre with the capacity to do major damage.

Nzeji assured that while no arrests have been made, investigations were ongoing to ascertain if the weapons belonged to robbers of members of the Boko Haram sect.

Last week, two members of the sect died in Kaduna state when military agents raided a bomb factory in the city.

Nzeji promised that the owners of the building in Kogi would be found out and the building will be demolished.

Kogi Governorship Election:ACN Women supporters protest result

Kogi Elections

The women wing of the Kogi state chapter of the Action Congress of Nigeria has protested the December 3rd Kogi State Governorship Election.

The women, who were carrying placards displaying their rejection of the result, obstructed the flow of vehicles on major roads in the state capital, Lokoja.

The Independent National Electoral Commission had declared the Peoples’ Democratic Party candidate, Captain Idris Wada as the winner of the election.

But the Director of Women Affairs in the state chapter of the ACN, Hajia Zainab Isah said that the results did not reflect their votes.