Onnoghen’s Retirement: NJC Holds Emergency Meeting

BREAKING: NJC Holds Emergency Meeting Over Onnoghen's Suspension
A file photo of the NJC session in Abuja.

 

The National Judicial Council (NJC), today held an Emergency Meeting to formally note the acceptance by President Muhammadu Buhari of the voluntary retirement of Justice Walter Onnoghen, as Chief Justice of Nigeria.

In a statement by the NJCs Director of Information, Soji Oye, the Presidents acceptance of the retirement is in line with the Councils recommendation to him on April 3, 2019.

At the end of the emergency meeting, the NJC thanked the President for accepting Onnoghens resignation, describing it as a move which was in the best interest of the country.

Read Also: President Buhari Accepts Onnoghens Voluntary Retirement

The Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, on Sunday announced that President Buhari had accepted the former CJN’s retirement from service.

According to him, the retirement took effect from May 28, 2019.

He said the President thanked Justice Onnoghen for his service to the Federal Republic of Nigeria and wished him the best of retirement life.

President Buhari also wrote to the Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Hon. Justice Tanko Muhammad, requesting that he commences the process of appointing five additional Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

Buhari Writes CJN Over Appointment Of Supreme Court Justices

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has written the Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Hon. Justice Tanko Muhammad, over the appointment of five additional Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

The Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, disclosed this in a statement on Sunday.

According to him, the President wrote: Pursuant to the provisions of Section 230(2) A&B of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), I am pleased to request that you initiate in earnest the process of appointing additional five Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria to make the full complement of 21 Justices as provided by the aforementioned provisions of the Constitution.

Read Also: President Buhari Accepts Onnoghens Voluntary Retirement

This is in line with the Governments Agenda of repositioning the Judiciary in general and Supreme Court in particular for greater efficiency, with a view to reducing the backlogs of appeals pending at the Supreme Court.

“Please accept, your Lordship, the assurances of my highest regards.”

Meanwhile, Mr Garba also noted that President Buhari has accepted the voluntary retirement from service of Hon. Justice Walter Onnoghen as Chief Justice of Nigeria which took effect from May 28.

He said the President thanked Justice Onnoghen for his service to the Federal Republic of Nigeria and wished him the best of retirement life.

Court Strikes Out Onnoghen’s Appeals Against CCT Judgement

A file photo of Justice Walter Onnoghen at the CCT on February 15, 2019. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

The Court of Appeal in Abuja has struck out the appeal filed by the suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen, challenging the judgement which ordered him to step aside.

A three-man panel led by Justice Stephen Adah on Friday held that the appeal had been spent and the substantive suit had been heard and concluded at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

The appeal court ruled that there was no need to go into the merit of the interlocutory appeal challenging the ex parte order of the CCT which ordered Justice Onnoghen to step aside as the CJN.

READ ALSOGanduje Denies Creating Additional Kano Emirates To Settle Personal Scores

On the appeal challenging the judgement of the Tribunal delivered on February 13, the appeal court held that there was no record of the said order before it.

It added that as a result of no record of the said proceedings, a decision cannot be entered.

The court, thereafter, struck out the appeal.

Justice Onnoghen had appealed the motion ex parte by the Chairman of the CCT, Danladi Umar, which ordered him to step aside as the CJN pending the determination of his trial.

According to him, the order of the Tribunal was procured behind his back when parties had already joined issues and when the prosecutor had on January 22 told the CCT that the order would be sought on the next adjourned date.

Similarly, the court in a unanimous decision dismissed the appeal filed by Justice Onnoghen, challenging the jurisdiction of the Tribunal to hear the charges brought against him.

It held that the issue of jurisdiction was not tenable because of Section 396(2), 221 and 306, which does not allow for a stay of proceedings in a criminal trial.

According to the appeal court, the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) has allowed for the continuation of cases while certain appeals are made.

In a unanimous decision, the court has also dismissed Justice Onnoghen’s appeal challenging the refusal of the Tribunal to be bound by the orders of the Federal High Court and Industrial Court to halt his trial.

It held that while the Tribunal erred in its decision to speedily ignore the orders, the stay of proceedings cannot be granted in interlocutory applications relying on Section 306 of the ACJA.

NJC Has No Capacity To Self-Reform – Jiti Ogunye

NJC Has No Capacity To Self-Reform – Ogunye

 

A legal practitioner, Mr Jiti Ogunye, says the National Judicial Council (NJC) lacks the capacity to reform itself.

He gave the opinion during his appearance on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, where he called for a total reform of the nation’s judiciary.

The lawyer was reacting to the issues surrounding the trial of Justice Walter Onnoghen at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

[READ ALSO] Onnoghen: Adesina, Oyeniyi Disagree Over Legality Of Procedure

 

He, however, said there was a need to carry along key stakeholders such as the NJC and the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) in the reform process for better result.

Ogunye said, “Recommendations can be made time and again but when there are no factual situations that warrant stakeholders focussing on the subject so closely; we won’t then have these issues.

“Talking about how to reform, I want to recommend that the Federal Government holds this event in collaboration with stakeholders – NJC, NBA, and all that, who have to set up a grand commission to look at how to reform our judiciary holistically and comprehensively.”

“Not just about corruption, and I am saying this with all sense of responsibility; the NJC has no capacity to self-reform,” he added. “Part of the problem that we have to deal with on this occasion is that we had a CJN who was indicted presiding over an NJC that he single-handedly nominated or appointed 14 members of; a majority of them.”

“So, how can that NJC that is called upon to regulate itself in regulating the regulators perform optimally?” the lawyer questioned.

He was hopeful that if the issues raised were thoroughly considered in addition with some legislative interventions such as amendment of the Constitution, the judiciary would become better.

The lawyer also suggested that the nation’s judicial system be re-federalised, as part of the fundamental reform process.

According to him, the judiciary is unitary regardless of the various forms of the court such as the state and federal High Courts.

Ogunye decried the situation where a judge has over 700 cases to adjudicate, stressing that Lagos State does, for example, needed a minimum of 200 judges.

 

Onnoghen: Adesina, Oyeniyi Disagree Over Legality Of Procedure

Mr Femi Adesina and a political scientist, Akinloye Oyeniyi, have disagreed over the procedure that led to the conviction of Justice Walter Onnoghen by the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

Adesina who is the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity insisted that the Federal Government followed due process in the case.

“That’s a position that has been there since January when the saga started, but one thing about this Presidency is that it does things according to procedure,” he told Channels Television during his appearance on Politics Today on Friday.

READ ALSOOnnoghen Rejects CCT’s Judgement, Files Notice Of Appeal

The presidential aide added, “What happened which a lot of people interpreted as sacking the CJN was just a suspension. It was clear; the CJN was suspended prior to the completion of the procedure that started then with his arraignment at the CCT.”

The CCT had convicted Justice Onnoghen and removed him from office as the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) and Chairman of the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB).

Justice Walter Onnoghen

 

It also banned him from holding public office for the next 10 years and ordered the judge to forfeit all five accounts said not to have been declared by him between 2009 and 2015.

The judgement has sparked mixed reactions, as some faulted it while others said it was appropriate.

Explaining further the procedure that led to the judgement, Adesina affirmed that the government never sacked Justice Onnoghen as alleged.

He said, “Before he (Onnoghen) threw in resignation, he was just suspended and not sack. So, the matter of wrong procedure does not arise at all. Nobody is above the law, not even the judiciary.”

Oyeniyi, however, disagreed with the explanation by the presidential aide and faulted the genesis of the whole issue.

He insisted that Onnoghen was still a sitting CJN as at the time when the government filed the charges against him at the Tribunal.

The political scientist, therefore, stated that the tribunal lacked the jurisdiction to entertain the case, referring to a case involving Justice Ngwuta.

He argued that the Constitution provided that it was only the National Judicial Council (NJC) that has the power to discipline a judicial officer.

“We have to look at this judgement; you know the issue started somewhere before it ended where it ended,” said Oyeniyi.

He added, “You can’t jump the NJC and go to the CCT.

“First, let’s look at the issue of jurisdiction because when a particular court or tribunal does not have jurisdiction to hear a particular case … if you continue to hear that case, whatever that is going to be the outcome of that case, you are building that particular structure on a no foundation.”

Onnoghen Rejects CCT’s Judgement, Files Notice Of Appeal

Onnoghen Rejects CCT's Judgement, Files Notice Of Appeal

 

Justice Walter Onnoghen has rejected the judgement of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) which convicted him of six counts of false declaration of assets preferred against him by the Federal Government.

Shortly after the judgement delivered on Thursday, the judge filed a notice of appeal at the Court of Appeal in Abuja to challenge the ruling of the Tribunal.

In the notice, a copy of which was sent to Channels Television, the “Federal Government of Nigeria” was listed as the only respondent.

READ ALSOOnnoghen Convicted, Banned From Holding Public Office For 10 Years

Part of it read, “Take notice that the appellant herein, Justice Onnoghen Nkanu Walter Samuel being dissatisfied with the rulings/judgement of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, Coram Danladi Umar (Chairman), William Atedze (Member I) and Julie A Anakor (Member II) delivered on the 18th of April, 2019, wherein it ruled on the application challenging its jurisdiction and to recuse itself from the proceedings as well the judgement on the substantive matter against the appellant, do hereby appeal upon the grounds set out in paragraph 3 hereof and will at the hearing of the appeal, seek the reliefs and orders set out in paragraph 4.”

In one of the 16 grounds, Justice Onnoghen said the CCT erred in law when it dismissed his application challenging its jurisdiction and thus, occasioned a grave miscarriage of justice.

He added that the Tribunal erred in law when it dismissed his application seeking the chairman to recuse himself from further proceedings on the ground of “bias”.

Justice Onnoghen, however, sought an order of the appeal court allowing his appeal and that the CCT lacked the jurisdiction to entertain the case.

He also asked the court to set aside his conviction as well as discharge and acquit him, among other prayers.

The Tribunal had convicted Justice Onnoghen and removed him from office as the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) and Chairman of the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB).

It also banned him from holding public office for the next 10 years and ordered the judge to forfeit all five accounts said not to have been declared by him between 2009 and 2015.

The Tribunal held that the government proved beyond reasonable doubt that Justice Onnoghen breached the Code of Conduct for Public Officers.

Read the full document below:

UPDATED: Onnoghen Convicted, Banned From Holding Public Office For 10 Years

 

The Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) has convicted the suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen, and banned him from holding any public office for the next 10 years.

He was convicted on six counts of false declaration of assets.

The CCT Chairman, Danladi Umar, during Thursday’s proceedings, held that Justice Onnoghen was not being charged as a judicial officer but an ordinary public officer and as such, the ruling in Justice Ngajiwa vs the Federal Government does not apply to the Tribunal.

He stated that the Tribunal had jurisdiction to try the defendant and that his prosecution was competent without regards to Section 158 Subsection 1.

PHOTOS: Onnoghen Arrives At CCT For Trial

In relation to the previous decision by the Tribunal in the trial of a Justice of the Supreme Court, he noted that the tribunal was at liberty to reverse itself, especially if that decision was taken with the wrong impression.

Mr Danladi also ruled on an application that the CCT Chairman should recuse himself because of a case with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

He held that the prosecution has been able to prove that there was no case against him before the anti-graft agency.

The Tribunal chairman stated that the EFCC had withdrawn the case against him on November 1, 2018.

He added that the Tribunal is not an appendage of the Presidency and there is a CCT without the chairman and as such, the Tribunal rejects the application.

Delivering judgment, Mr Danladi held that the Tribunal considered the submission of the prosecution and the statement and evidence before it.

He explained that they found them worthy of consideration and more than enough to hold the view that the defendant has contravened the provisions of the Code of Conduct for public officers.

The CCT chairman said it was contained in evidence six where the defendant admitted by himself that he forgot, adding that the issue of partial declaration does not arise.

He held that the Tribunal believed the facts that were before it since the defence could not disprove it, saying it was “crystal clear” that the defendant was in clear breach of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers.

Reading the sentence, Mr Danladi said the Tribunal came to the conclusion that the defendant has falsely declared his asset by failing to declare the five accounts listed in the charge sheet.

He asked the defence team if it has anything to say and the team and Justice Onnoghen answered in the negative.

The Tribunal, thereafter, convicted Justice Onnoghen and removed him from office as the CJN and Chairman of the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB).

Justice Onnoghen was also banned from holding public office for the next 10 years and ordered to forfeit all five accounts said not to have been declared by him between 2009 and 2015.

The Tribunal held that the Federal Government had proven beyond reasonable doubt that Justice Onnoghen breached the Code of Conduct for public officers.

Timeline: Onnoghen’s Tenure And Trial

October 10, 2016:  NJC recommended Justice Onnoghen as CJN to President Muhammadu Buhari.

November 11, 2016: As most senior at the Supreme Court Justice Walter Onnoghen took over leadership of the judiciary in an acting capacity.

February 7, 2017: Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo transmitted Onnoghen’s name to the Senate for confirmation as substantive CJN.

March 1, 2017: Senate screened and confirmed Onnoghen.

March 7, 2017: Onnoghen was sworn in as the 17th substantive Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) by the acting President, Yemi Osinbajo.

READ ALSO: CCT Commences Judgement For Onnoghen’s Trial

January 7, 2019: A civil society group, Anti-corruption, and Research-based Data Initiative (ARDI), petitioned the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), listing a number of allegations against Justice Onnoghen notably non-declaration of assets.

January 12, 2019: The CCB announced that it had filed a six-count charge against Onnoghen at the CCT.

January 14, 2019: Trial began at CCT with Justice Onnoghen absent

January 22, 2019: The Federal Government asked Onnoghen to step aside from office.

January 25, 2019: Onnoghen was suspended and replaced by Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad.

January 26, 2019: The United States issued a statement on Onnoghen’s suspension.

January 29, 2019: Onnoghen sued the Federal Government over his suspension.

January 30, 2019: Onnoghen lost bid to stop his trial at the CCT.

February 13, 2019: CCT ordered Onnoghen’s arrest.

February 15, 2019: Onnoghen finally appeared at CCT and pleaded not guilty.

April 1, 2019: Onnoghen opened defence at the tribunal.

April 3, 2019: Onnoghen closed defence at CCT.

April 4, 2019: Onnoghen reportedly resigned as CJN.

April 15, 2019: Tribunal fixes Thursday 18th April to deliver judgment on Onnoghen’s trial.

April 18, 2019: CCT removes Justice Onnoghen as CJN, bans him from holding public office for the next 10 years.

No-Case Submission: Onnoghen Files Notice Of Appeal Against CCT Ruling

 

The suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen, is planning to appeal the ruling of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) on his ‘no-case submission’.

He disclosed this in a notice of appeal on Friday shortly after the Tribunal held that Justice Onnoghen has a case to answer in his trial over alleged non-declaration of assets.

The CCT Chairman, Danladi Umar, had insisted that the judge must enter his defence on Monday next week, despite pleas to adjourn the case.

READ ALSOCCT Dismisses No-Case Submission By Suspended CJN

Dissatisfied with the ruling, Justice Onnoghen resolved to challenge the decision of the Tribunal at the Court of Appeal in Abuja.

He listed the “Federal Republic of Nigeria” as the sole defendant in the proposed appeal.

The judge stated that the CCT erred in law when it dismissed his no-case submission by its alleged failure to appreciate his submission that the processes that led to the criminal proceeding against him by the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) violated the provision of the law

He added that the CCB, as a creation of the Constitution, was bound by all law made for the due process of the exercise of its powers under the law.

According to Justice Onnoghen, the members of the Tribunal erred in law when they overruled his no-case submission “when there is uncontroverted evidence” before it that there was no lawful investigation into the allegations against him.

He also claimed that the Tribunal erred in law when it dismissed his submission and refused to consider that the elements of the offence he was alleged to have committed were not proved by any legally acceptable evidence.

The suspended CJN insisted that the totality of the evidence was “hearsay”.

Read the full Notice of Appeal by Justice Onnoghen below:

Second, Third Prosecution Witnesses Testify In Onnoghen’s Trial At CCT

Second Prosecution Witness Testifies In Onnoghen’s Trial At CCT
Suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen (file).

 

A former director in charge of political office at the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), Mr Awal Yakassi, has given his testimony in the alleged non-declaration of asset case against the suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen.

Mr Yakassi testified on behalf of the Federal Government as the second prosecution witness on Thursday during the resumed trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

He told the Tribunal that he was the one who attended to Justice Onnoghen when he submitted two of his asset declaration forms in December 2016.

The witness said he received the forms and signed on them and provided the judge’s representative with two acknowledgement slips for receiving the forms.

Under cross-examinations, he noted that he was not served any subpoena to appear before the Tribunal.

READ ALSOINEC Fixes April To Resume Collation, Announcement Of Results In Rivers

When asked if he was at the Tribunal giving evidence as an officer of the CCB, Yakassi said he was giving evidence as a person who worked in that office in the past since he has retired.

He gave an affirmative response to a question as to whether he was a member of the management of CCB as a director in the bureau up until his retirement.

He also responded in the same manner when asked if as a member of the management of the CCB, he took instruction from the chairman and other members.

When asked if he has never heard about Code of Conduct Standards Operating Procedures, the witness, however, refused to answer and asked the lawyer how many he has heard.

At this point, counsel to Justice Onnoghen asked the Tribunal for protection but the CCT Chairman, Danladi Umar, said he was there to protect everybody, but the counsel should not harass the witness.

The counsel consequently asked again, and the witness said he has heard about the rule.

Asked if he knew that the commencement date of that rule was January 27, 2017, the witness said no.

Yakassi was, thereafter, as how many staff he had under his department and their ranks.

He said he has left the service and cannot recall.

When asked how many years he spent at the CCB, the witness said 29 years.

The witness told the Tribunal that he cannot recall how many judicial officers were given asset declaration forms while he was in service.

He also said he does not know if any member of the public can have access to anybody’s asset declaration form, or if it was only the chairman that can approve such.

Yakassi was then handed exhibit one which was the petition written against Justice Onnoghen.

He, however, said he had no knowledge of it.

Asked if he was shown the petition on January 11, 2019, when he made a statement to the investigative officer of the bureau, he gave a negative response.

The witness also said he was not shown the originals of exhibit 2 and 3, but his counsel said he should be shown.

The documents were subsequently shown to him and the witness said it was only the photocopies that were shown to him.

He told the Tribunal that he had no knowledge of the organization that wrote the petition.

Thereafter, the third prosecution witness, Ifeoma Okagbue, who is a banker with Standard Charted Bank, opened her testimony.

She told the Tribunal that her duties include offering financial services to high net worth clients, as well as new business development, growing and deepening priority affluent base, and offering investment advice and wealth management solutions.

Okagbue was then shown exhibit 5 which were bank statements and bank opening documents belonging to Justice Onnoghen after which she was asked if they were the ones given to CCB by her bank.

She answered in the affirmative and informed the Tribunal that the documents belonged to him.

The witness told the court that the accounts were opened in June 2009 and April 2010.

My Asset Declaration Forms Were Tampered With, Onnoghen Tells CCT

My Asset Declaration Forms Were Tampered With, Onnoghen Tells CCT
Justice Walter Onnoghen (file)

 

The suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, has alleged that the two asset declaration forms he submitted to the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) have been tampered with.

Justice Onnoghen made the allegation on Monday in Abuja through his counsel, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr Adeboyega Awomolo, who cross-examined a prosecution witness at the resumed trial on the six counts of non-declaration of assets brought against him by the Federal Government.

Justice Onnoghen informed the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) that the two forms he submitted in 2014 and 2016 were mutilated and in loose form.

The allegation came when the first prosecution witness, a senior investigation officer with the CCB, Mr James Akpala, sought to tender the two asset forms investigated by the bureau.

READ ALSOWe Expect High-Level Cooperation From Security Agencies – INEC

But when the attention of the defence team was drawn to the two asset forms, Mr Awomolo consulted with Onnoghen for verification before tendering the forms.

After glancing through the forms, Justice Onnoghen informed the Tribunal through his counsel that the documents had been tampered with and that the CCT would be addressed on the issue.

While giving his testimony, Akpala explained how the CBB referred a petition from the Centre for Anti-Corruption Initiative and signed by one Denis Aganya to him and two others on January 10, 2019.

In the process, he said his team met with Justice Onnoghen, obtained a statement from him, and applied for his account details with a commercial bank.

The witness added that the investigation was concluded on January 11, when the team’s report was prepared.

Under cross-examination by the defence counsel, the witness said he did not know whether the CCB had a central registry and register where all returned asset declaration forms were kept.

He also informed the tribunal that investigation into the petition against Onnoghen was concluded within 24 hours by his team.

When asked if he was aware that the charges against the justice, list of witnesses, and proof of evidence, were prepared, dated and signed by the prosecutor on January 10, 2019, prior to the conclusion of his investigation, the witness declined.

He, however, confirmed the dates when he was confronted with the documents.

Answering another question under cross-examination, Akpala denied the claim that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) was involved in the investigation of Justice Onnoghen.

When also confronted that the bank statements he claimed he obtained from a commercial bank were addressed to the EFCC, he declined further comment.

After listening to the arguments and testimonies, the Tribunal adjourned further hearing till Thursday, to enable the prosecutor subpoena the account officer to Justice Onnoghen and allow the suspended CJN appear before the National Judicial Council (NJC).

Onnoghen Absent At Tribunal On Health Grounds, Trial Adjourned

CCT Adjourns Onnoghen’s Trial Indefinitely
Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen (file)

 

The trial of the suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen, has been adjourned till March 18, 2019.

At the resumed hearing on Tuesday, the Code of Conduct Tribunal adjourned the case following Onnoghen’s absence on health grounds.

His counsel, Adeboyega Awomolo, had tendered a letter from the CJN, explaining that he developed issues with his tooth and could not make it to court.

The prosecutor on the other hand, Aliyu Umar, said he had also received a copy of the letter as well as a medical report indicating he had a high blood pressure.

He added that the health of a defendant is as important as the case on the ground and in the light of that, he would concede that the absence is on medical grounds.

He, therefore, urged the court to consider the report and adjourn the case till next week Monday or another week for a day-to-day hearing.

According to the letter, Onnoghen was given a 72-hour bed rest.

Having considered the situation, the chairman of the tribunal then adjourned the case.

Read Also: CCT Resumes Justice Onnoghen’s Trial

Onnoghen: Court Reserves Judgment In Appeal Filed By Cross River Govt

CCT Adjourns Onnoghen’s Trial Indefinitely
Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen (file)

 

The Supreme Court has reserved judgment in an appeal filed by the Cross Rivers State Government challenging the suspension of Justice Walter Onnoghen as the Chief Justice of Nigeria.

In the appeal, the Cross River Govt had pleaded that as a court of first instance, the apex court should decide whether the president acted in line with the Constitution by the suspension.

The Attorney General of Cross Rivers State who filed the suit on behalf of the state urged the court to determine if the president did not give himself a fiat to act outside the Constitution and if by his action he has abrogated to himself the power to alter the law as he dims fit.

Read Also: Court Reserves Judgement In Two Appeals Filed By Justice Onnoghen

In a preliminary objection argued by the solicitor general, Mr Dayo Akpata on behalf of the Federal Government argued that the issues are already subjudice and that an Order of Court is an order of court irrespective of which court gave the order.

After listening to all arguments, the lead judge of the 7-man panel, Justice Bode Rhodes-Vivour, said the case is a constitutional matter which requires time for a careful examination of the issues raised.

He, therefore, adjourned the case to May 17, 2019.