The National Judicial Council (NJC) has ordered the compulsory retirement of Justice Gladys Olotu of the Federal High Court and Justice U.A. Inyang of the Abuja High Court for gross misconduct.
A statement signed by NJC’s acting Director of Information, Mr. Soji Oye, said the two judges had been suspended pending the time the President Goodluck Jonathan would approve their retirement.
The suspension, he said, is with immediate effect.
THISDAY gathered that the decision to suspend the judges was taken at the council meeting held on February 26.
The council also issued warnings to a former acting President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Dalhatu Adamu and two high court judges: Justice A.A. Adeleye of the High Court of Ekiti State and Justice D.O. Amaechina of the High Court of Justice of Anambra State.
NJC said: “Justice G. K. Olotu was recommended for compulsory retirement pursuant to the findings by the council on the following allegations inter-alia, contained in the petitions written against His Lordship: “That the judge failed to deliver judgment only to deliver same in Suit No. FHC/UY/250/2003, 18 months after the final address by all the counsel in the suit, contrary to the constitutional provisions that judgments should be delivered within a period of 90 days.
“The judge admitted before the Fact Finding Committee of the council that investigated the allegations that she forgot she had a pending ruling to deliver in an application for joinder; and
“That the judge entertained a post judgment matter in Suit No. FHC/UY/CS/250/2003 in Port Harcourt after delivering judgment, which made her functus officio.
“That in another case: Suit No. FHC/ABJ/CS/505/2012, Justice Olotu failed to deliver judgment twice.”
As for Justice U. A. Inyang of the Abuja High Court, he was also recommended for compulsory retirement from office sequel to the findings of the council on the following allegations levelled against him:
â€œThat the judge included in his judgment, references to the garnishee proceedings, which came after the judgment had been delivered on December 20, 2011.
“That His Lordship also included the name of the counsel to Federal Road Maintenance Agency (FERMA), Chief Chukwuma Ekomaru, SAN, who came into the matter after the judgment of December 20, 2011 was delivered;
“That the judge recklessly signed a Writ of Execution, a day after delivering his judgment of 20th December 20, 2011, the same day a Notice of Appeal and Motion on Notice for Stay of Execution were filed.
“That the judge continued with the garnishee proceedings despite application for stay of execution; and
“That before delivering his judgment of December 20, 2011, Justice Inyang ignored a properly filed motion on notice for leave to file additional witness statement on oath.”
Meanwhile, the council has recommended Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa to President Goodluck Jonathan for appointment as the President of the Court of Appeal.
She would succeed Justice Isa Ayo Salami who retired last year under controversial circumstances.
Also the council has recommended that 25 judges of various high court be elevated to the Court of Appeal.
The judge are: Justice Tani Hassan, Justice Mohammed Shuaib, Justice Musa Alkali and Justice Jamilu Tukur.
Other are Justice Saidu Tanko, Justice Mudashiru Oniyangi, Justice Amina Wambai and Justice Rigwan Abdullahi.
Justice Hamma Barka, Justice Bitrus Sanga, Justice Mohammed Mustapha and Justice Yagatta Nimta.
Justice Joseph Ekanem, Justice Feoho Oho, Justice Abimbola Adejumo, Justice Bolokuroma Ugo and Diobele Georgewill.
Justice Nonyerem Okoronkwo, Justice Ugochukwu Ogakwu and Justice Paul Elechi, Justice Oludotun Adefowope Okogie, Justice Joseph Oyewole, Justice Mistura Bolaji Yusuf and Justice O.E. Williams-Daudu.