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On Thursday, 20th October 2016, The Nigerian Bar Association through its president, Abubakar Mahmud (SAN) called for the suspension of the seven judges who were arrested by the State Security Services SSS on the 8 of October.

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The judges who had been arrested and are still being investigated for bribery and corruption related crimes, had returned to continue presiding over cases.

The NBA Chairman, made the call at the Valedictory court session held in honour of a retiring judicial officer, Justice Sotonye Denton-West of the court of appeal.

He is of the view that, it is necessary to do so, in order to protect the sanctity and integrity of judicial processes that may involve the judges and to safeguard the public image of the institution.

Mr. Mahmud stated that, “In the interim, particularly having regards to what appears to be an ongoing accusations and counter-accusations between some of the judges and other personalities or agencies, it appears to the NBA that it is extremely important that the National Judicial Council NJC, takes very urgent steps to safeguard the public image and sanctity of the courts.”

We therefore strongly recommend that, without prejudice to the innocence or otherwise of the judges involved in the ongoing investigations, they should be required to recuse themselves from further judicial functions or required to proceed on compulsory leave until their innocence is fully and completely established or until the conclusion of all judicial or disciplinary proceedings.”

Source: Premium Times

Written by Okolo Ezinne

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