A group, Movement Against Corruption, has said that President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption war would be futile if corrupt judges in the country’s judiciary are not removed. The group urged the President to begin the anti-graft war from the judiciary, adding that the dismissal of a few corrupt ones would serve as a deterrent to others.
In a statement by the Deputy Coordinator of the group, Dr. Feyisara Oluwole, on Sunday, the group stressed that it was important to take this step before the trial of corrupt public officials commenced. The statement partly read, “Many have argued that the anti-graft agencies need to be strengthened and well funded, which is understandable, but the most important factor that will determine the success or otherwise of the anti-graft war remains the judiciary.
“Once a few corrupt judges are prosecuted, others will learn to abide by their oath of office. We condemn the recent pronouncement by a former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Aloma Mukhtar, that she received 153 petitions and that only 30 of them were genuine.
“Our group supported a petition against a corrupt judge who shamelessly had been collecting money from defendants in land suits in the Badagry area of Lagos. This judge was in the Badagry division for years before he was transferred. He is known by all stakeholders as a very corrupt judge and many lawyers with cases before him complained bitterly. There were many petitions sent to the National Judicial Council regarding his shameful misconduct.”
The group, therefore, called on the CJN to revisit all the petitions sent to the NJC during the tenure of the former CJN and treat them on their merit rather than sweep them under the carpet. It stressed that nobody would petition the NJC without a good reason, adding that this was the only way to sanitise the bench.