I did not sack five Justices of the Appeal Court, says Bulkachuwa

Justice Bulkachuwa (PCA)

Justice Bulkachuwa (PCA)

CONTRARY to reports in some media, President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa yesterday said there was no truth to the claims that she sacked five justices of the Court of Appeal. 

In an electronic statement signed and released  by Media Officer of the Appeal Court,  Sa’adatu Musa said “the Court of Appeal has noted with dismay, an online report of December 22, by Sahara Reporters credited to the President, Hon. Justice Zainab Adamu Bulkachuwa (CFR), alleging that she sacked five Justices of the Benin Division of the Court.”

Musa said: “There was never a time any Justice of the Court of Appeal was sacked by the PCA or any other authority, pointing out that the President of the Court of Appeal has no Constitutional powers to sack any Justice of the Court.”

She said: “It is only the National Judicial Council (NJC) that has the constitutional powers after following due process to discipline any erring Justice on proven facts or to recommend his dismissal to the President.”

Musa said: “The fact that Justices of the Benin Division of the Court did not hear the Delta Governorship Appeal should not be considered a dent on their character, competence or ability to discharge their judicial function.

“The Justices of the Court have the whole of Nigeria as their constituency. They are therefore competent to sit and determine a matter anywhere in Nigeria,” the statement explained.

It explained further: “During the course of election appeals which had only a life span of 60 days, the Justices had been empanelled to move to any jurisdiction to hear election appeals in Divisions other than their own.

“The Justices under consideration were assigned to other Divisions to determine matters at the material time which is in line with the standing practice of the Court of moving its Justices from different Judicial Divisions to ensure transparency and impartiality.

Same was adopted for all the Election Petition Appeal Panels.
Justices of the Court of Appeal would remain as resilient as ever and would not be distracted by the misleading report.”

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