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Ibadan NBA Writes Makinde: Ask Oyo Assembly To Confirm Justice AbdulGaniyu As CCA President, Delay Affecting Oyo Judiciary

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The Ibadan branch of the Nigerian Bar Association has written to Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde to take appropriate steps to right the affairs of the state’s judiciary.

The association in an open letter to the Governor signed by its chairperson, Mrs Folasade Aladeniyi, and Secretary, Mr Olakunle Akintola, made available to journalists by its Publicity Secretary, Mr Oluwatobi Fatoki noted that failure to take these steps will continue to mar and diminish any noble intervention in the affairs of the Judiciary and administration of Justice in the State.

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“Firstly, it is public knowledge that the immediate past President of the Oyo State Customary Court of Appeal; Hon. Justice M.A.A Abass (PCCA) retired in 2023 and since then, a new substantive President is yet to be appointed in line with the dictates of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).

“It is worthy of note that on the 6th day of December, 2023, the National Judicial Council (NJC) confirmed the nomination of the Acting President, Hon. Justice T.M Abdulganiyu for approval as the substantive President of the court but Your Excellency, we are not aware that his name has been forwarded to the Oyo State House of Assembly for confirmation as required by the Constitution till now,” the association wrote in the letter.

In the same vein, the association decried the fact that since 2021 when the governor approved that the Oyo State Judicial Service Commission should begin the process of appointing more judges, this has not come to fruition. 

“As part of the appointment process, the inspection team of the National Judicial Council visited the state sometime in 2023 to confirm the availability and inspect the operational vehicles for the proposed Judges but none was made available and as a result, the inspection team returned to Abuja and the process has been stalled till today.

“Your Excellency Sir, the continuous depletion in the number of serving Judges as a result of retirement and elevation makes the issue of appointment of Judges in Oyo State an emergency one. 

“Presently, we have only 23 Judges in the Oyo State High Court and only 3 Judges in the Oyo State Customary Court of Appeal. These figures are far below the number of Judges needed in the Oyo State Bench to do Justice to the pending cases in our Courts given the cosmopolitan nature of the State. The sitting Judges are overwhelmed and this has continued to occasion delay in the disposal of cases in our Courts.” 

The association added that the Governor must also address other issues like improvement in the welfare of workers at the state’s Ministry of Justice and decline in the administrative process at the ministry leading to ineffective service delivery to the government and to the public.

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