Barristers & Solicitors
11 Supreme Court Justices-designate may be sworn in next week
Supreme Court

The 11 Justices-designate of the Supreme Court who were cleared yesterday by the Senate will be sworn in next week, The Nation learnt yesterday.

Sources said following the confirmation, the Senate will write the Presidency, informing it about the clearance.

Thereafter, the Presidency will advise the National Judicial Council (NJC) and the Supreme Court will organise a special session where the Justices will be sworn in – next week. 

The Senate confirmation of the 11 Justices followed the consideration of the report of the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, which screened the Justices and the approval of its recommendations by the Red Chamber.

Committee Chairman Mohammed Monguno (APC, Borno North) presented the report.

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu had, on Wednesday, asked the Senate to confirm the 11 nominees, who were recommended by the National Judicial Council (NJC) to fill the vacant positions following the death and resignation of some justices of the apex court.

The Supreme Court Justices-designate include Justice Haruna Tsammani (Northeast), who chaired the Presidential Election Petition Court; Justice Moore Adumein (Southsouth), Justice Jummai Sankey (Northcentral), Justice Chidiebere Uwa (Southeast) and Justice Chioma Nwosu-Iheme (Southeast).

The others are: Justice Obande Ogbuinya (Southeast), Justice Stephen Adah (Northcentral), Justice Habeeb Abiru (Southwest), Justice Jamilu Tukur (Northwest), Justice Abubakar Umar (Northwest), and Justice Mohammed Idris (Northcentral).

The appointment of the 11 Justices brings to 21 the number of Justices on the Supreme Court’s Bench which hitherto had only 10 justices.

Monguno said the nominees had the requisite qualifications and experiences to occupy the position and that there was no petition against them.

He recommended their confirmation.

All the senators who spoke before the confirmation had expressed concern over the delay in the appointment of justices for the Supreme Court’s Bench.

Senator Seriake Dickson (PDP, Bayelsa) advised that in the event of future vacancies, a provision for their immediate replacement should be made.

Senate Leader Opeyemi Bamidele (APC, Ekiti Central) said it was important that those who are next in line be screened and appointed immediately as the vacancies occur at the apex court.

Senator Orji Uzor Kalu (APC, Abia) stressed that the funds allocated to the Supreme Court in the 2024 budget be reviewed upwards to ensure its effectiveness

Also, the Senate has adjourned plenary till Friday, December 29, 2023, to receive the report of the Appropriation Committee on the 2024 Budget estimates.