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Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Impressive! NJC gives this new directive to judges to prevent corruption

Impressive! NJC gives this new directive to judges to prevent corruption

– The NJC has given a new directive to judges involved in sensitive  and highly visible cases

– Such judges will now be required to declare their assets before and after the case

–  Also the NJC constituted a 10-man judicial ethics committee to review the code of conduct for judicial officers in the country

Some of the judges whose homes were reportedly raided by the DSS

In order to prevent corruption, the National Judicial Council (NJC) has given a new directive to judges. Henceforth, all judges participating in “sensitive and highly visible trials such as election petition proceedings” must declare their personal assets before and after conclusion of such cases.

Yesterday, October 24, the NJC constituted a 10-man judicial ethics committee, whose function was to ensure that the new directive was obeyed by reviewing  the code of conduct for judicial officers in the country.

Also, the council stated that allegations of misconduct against judicial officers or employees of the judiciary shall not be leaked or published in the media.

This revised judicial code of conduct to be put into place will contain sanctions for persistent under-performance, inability to utilize time efficiently, low standard of judicial management and persistent failure by judges to comply with sitting requirements as well as, “provisions relating to the responsibility of judicial officers, so as to avoid inordinate and excessive length of proceedings causing delay in justice delivery.”

The governing council  has also mandated a Judicial Performance and Evaluation Committee to request various heads of courts to compile and submit regular statistics of ages of pending cases.

Chief Adekunle Oyesanya, SAN, and former Director-General of the Nigerian Law School, has cautioned the federal government on its methods of fighting corruption.

“If this government continues like this in their bid to kill corruption, at the end of the day, if they are not careful, they will kill this country. They are fighting a just cause through unjust means. Nobody is saying that government is wrong in tackling corruption.

 

It (corruption) is so endemic that it goes from the top to the very bottom,” he said. Chief Oyesanya also pointed out that corruption is a moving target in the country and requires keeping eyes on the ball to avoid losing it.

Meanwhile the new policy of keeping the trial of judges out of the media has caused some problems as the Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL) says the NJC is not prepared to curb corruption in the third arm of government that has now been riddled with scandals as the new policy is meant to try such erring judges in secret.

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