NJC and NBA convene on Onnoghen’s suspension

As a result of the ongoing saga on the suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen, the National Judicial Council (NJC) and the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has announced an emergency meeting to discuss the controversial suspension of the CJN.

According to the NBA the  meeting is expected to discuss what it described as the: “Purported Suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Hon Mr Justice Walter S. C. Onnoghen and any Other Business.”

President Muhammadu Buhari following the exparte order of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) announced the suspension of Mr. Walter Onnoghen who is currently facing trial after he was charged for false declaration of his assets.

Mr. Walter Onnoghen had refused to appear for the trial on two occasions and had challenged the validity of his trial before the CCT at the Appeal Court. The trial, scheduled to continue on January 28 at the CCT has been suspended, following an Appeal Court directive that the proceedings at the tribunal should wait until the appellate court determines Mr Onnoghen’s application challenging his trial on January 30.

While waiting for the hearing at the Appeal Court, President Muhammadu Buhari announced the suspension of Mr. Walter Onnoghen following a directive from the CCT on January 23 following the hearing on the matter at the CCT on January 22 which Onnoghen was absent.

In order to discuss this issue surrounding Mr. Walter Onnoghen’s suspension, the NJC and the NBA in a statement signed by the National Secretary, Jonathan Taidi on Sunday has stated that the NJC and the NBA will be meeting on Monday and Tuesday. The major question bothering most analysts is who is likely to chair the meeting? Would it be the former CJN, Walrer Onnoghen or the acting CJN, Ibrahim Mohammed.

The meeting is expected to be attended by the following members of the NBA:

  • Chairmen and Secretaries of Sections;
  • Branch NEC Representatives;
  • Branch Secretaries;
  • Branch Chairmen;
  • Past General Secretaries;
  • Past Presidents; and
  • National Officers.
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