The National Judicial Council, NJC, has ordered the immediate reinstatement of Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia as a judge of the Federal High Court, FHC.
This was made known in a circular issued by the Chief Judge of FHC, Justice John Tsoho, on Dec. 5 notifying judges of the court about the development.
The NJC took the decision on December 1 during a meeting it held.
Justice Tsoho’s circular reads: “Your lordships are, by this circular letter, notified that at the meeting of the National Judicial Council held on the 1st of December, 2022, the council reinstated Hon. Justice R. N. Ofili-Ajumogobia as a Judicial Officer.
“The reinstatement takes instant effect and there shall be consequential posting.”
Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia was prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on a 15-count charge bordering on money laundering and breach of public trust.
In a ruling in November 2021, Justice Ambrose Lewis-Allagoa of Lagos division of FHC upheld Ofili-Ajumogobia’s application to quash the charge and dismissed the allegations against her.
Justice Lewis-Allagoa relied on an earlier order by Justice Binta Nyako of a FHC, Abuja, which quashed all the recommendations of the NJC.
Justice Nyako, in a judgment delivered on Nov. 28, 2019, in the suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/638/2018 filed by Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia against the NJC, quashed the council’s report and recommendations, including for the judge’s sack.