The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) says the planned trial of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, by the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) should be stopped because it does not follow the rule of law.
Concise News understands that Onnoghen, who is Nigeria’s number one justice, also known as the CJN, has been accused of not declaring his assets as required by law.
It was learned that charges were filed before the CCT by the Code of Conduct Bureau, based on a petition signed by the Executive Secretary of the anti-corruption research data-based initiative, Mr. Dennis Aghanya.
The tribunal, to this end, fixed Monday, January 14, for commencement of the trial of Justice Onnoghen on six counts.
The six charges border on the alleged failure of the CJN to declare his assets and operating a domiciliary account, allegations Justice Onnoghen has denied.
And angered by the planned trial of Nigeria’s topmost justice, the NBA, which is the body of practicing Nigerian lawyers, said in a statement that the media trial of the chief justice did not follow the rule of law and should, as such, be stopped.
“We have in total a record number of 3 (three) working days between the receipt and processing of the petition, investigation, preparation of Charge and ancillary processes and the arraignment! Such unprecedented speed and efficiency in Nigeria’s criminal justice administration!” NBA President Paul Usoro (SAN) said in a statement.
“It is clear, given the rush with which this matter was conducted by the CCB, that the NJC was not privy to it and did not conduct its mandatorily required disciplinary processes prior to the filing of the Charge before the CCT.”
Usoro, therefore, condemns what he calls the assault, intimidation, and desecration of the judiciary by agencies of the federal government.