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Strive to Have “Global Standard of Operations”, Lawyers Tell New CJN, Onnoghen

Some Abuja-based lawyers on Tuesday urged the new Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen to pursue reforms that would give the nation’s judiciary a new lease of life.

Strive to have “global standard of operations”, lawyers tell new CJN, Onnoghen
Ag. President Yemi Osinbajo decorating Justice Walter Onnonghen with the National Honour of the Grand Commander of the Niger during his oath-taking ceremony as the CJN at the Aso Chambers, Presidential Villa, Abuja. Photo by Abayomi Adeshida
They made the call in separate interviews in Kubwa, Abuja, shortly after Justice Onnoghen was sworn in as the CJN.

A respondent, Mr Jude Kalejaiye, stressed the need for continuous training of lower court judges in order to boost justice delivery.

He advised Justice Onnoghen to also ensure that the apex court and the Court of Appeal have the right number of judges to adjudicate on matters at all times.

According to him, the nation’s judiciary under Justice Onnoghen must strive to have “ global standard of operations.”

Another lawyer, Mrs Maureen Ajogo, advised the new CJN to improve the legacies of his predecessors such as Justice Mahmud Mohammed.

“The independence of the judiciary must be pursued to its logical conclusion.
“The expectation is high because we can’t afford to do less.

“He must ensure discipline in the system and all we expect from him is to consolidate on the achievements of his predecessors generally”, she said.

She maintained that people’s confidence in the judiciary should be restored by the CJN who should do all within his powers to protect the integrity of the system.

Ajogo emphasised that the welfare of judiciary workers should be accorded the utmost priority, while the new CJN should strive to enhance the harmonious working relationship among the court workers in the country.

Similarly, another lawyer, Mr Effiong Nathaniel, tasked the new CJN to ensure good working environment for judicial officers to enable them put in their best.

“Onnoghen must also uphold the tenets of the judiciary as the last hope of the common man in the country, ” he said.

Senate on Wednesday confirmed Justice Walter Onnoghen as the new CJN, following a letter the Acting President sent to the National Assembly on Feb. 7.

Onnoghen had served in acting capacity after taking over from the immediate past CJN, Mahmud Mohammed who retired on Nov.10, 2016.

The new CJN has been a justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria since 2005.

He graduated from the University of Ghana, Legon in 1977, and from the Nigerian Law School, Lagos in 1978.

Before joining the Supreme Court, he was the Chief Judge of Cross River and later a judge in the Court of Appeal.

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