The Senate has confirmed the nominations of eight Justices of the Court of Appeal as Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
A statement signed on Tuesday by the Special Assistant on Press to President of the Senate, Ezrel Tabiowo, said the confirmation of the nominees followed the consideration of a report by the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters.
The confirmed Justices are: Justice Lawal Garba, North West; Justice Helen Ogunwumiju, South West; Justice Addu Aboki, North West; Justice I. M. Saulawa, North West.
Others include Justice Adamu Jauro, North East; Justice Samuel Oseji, South South; Justice Tijjani Abubakar, North East; and Justice Emmanuel Agim, South South.
Chairman of the Committee, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele (APC – Ekiti Central), in his presentation stated that the appointment of the nominees, satisfied the requirement of Sections 230(2) and 232(1) and (2) and (3) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.
According to the lawmaker, “upon confirmation of the appointment of the nominees by the Senate, all Geo-political Zones will be represented by three or four Justices, as the case may be.”
He, however, said there is an exception of the North-Central Zone, which will maintain its current two Justices on the Bench of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
Mr Bamidele further explained that, “the reason why the North-Central zone has two Justices unlike other zones, can be attributed to the fact that during the selection process, the nomination from the zone was stood down by the selection Committee for a further review of the nomination by the Federal Judicial Service Commission.”
He added that while necessary steps were being taken to meet the full complement of the maximum number of Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, the appointment of the eight Justices of the Supreme Court was a bold step taken by President Buhari to strengthen the Judiciary to meet with the challenges of the 21st Century.
DAILY NIGERIAN reports that some lawmakers, including the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege (APC – Delta Central); Senate Leader, Yahaya Abdullahi (APC – Kebbi North); and Gabriel Suswam (PDP – Benue North East) in their contributions, expressed satisfaction with the qualification, experience and competence of the nominees.
The upper chamber in a Committee of the Whole, thereafter, confirmed the nomination of the eight appointees as Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.