By Ismaila Chafe
President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday approved the compulsory retirement of Justice Adeniyi Ademola, and the dismissal of Justice O.O Tokode.
Ademola was of the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, while Tokode was of Benin Division of the same court.
This is according to a statement issued in Abuja by the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu.
Shehu said that the president’s approval followed recommendations from the National Judicial Council (NJC).
“The disciplinary actions on the two Justices are in pursuance of Section 292 (1) (b) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
“Justice O. O. Tokode is also to refund all salaries and allowances earned illegally from Dec. 2, 2015 when he was sworn-in as a Judge of the Federal High Court to date,’’ Shehu said.
The presidential aide quoted Buhari as urging “judicial officers to be alive to their responsibilities and eschew corruption in the discharge of their duties’’.
Meanwhile, Buhari has commenced the process of ensuring that Judges and Justices recommended by the NJC for appointment into various Courts of Record are not under any disability to function as judicial officers.
According to Shehu, the President’s position is in furtherance of the executive powers vested in him under Section 5 of the 1999 Constitution.
The Section allows him as the appointing authority to exercise same reasonably, taking all relevant factors into consideration.
“Nigerians are assured that President Buhari will issue his approval or otherwise as soon as the process of the background verification is completed.’’