Judiciary under threat, says CJN

Walter Onnoghen, chief justice of Nigeria (CJN), says the nation’s judiciary is under threat.

Onnoghen made this known during a thanksgiving service held at the Methodist Church Nigeria, Abuja diocese.

He said judiciary officers in the country were being accused of corrupt practices without given the chance of fair hearing.

He, however, urged Nigerians to petition any judicial officer involved in any form of corruption or unprofessional conduct to the National Judicial Council (NJC).

“The judiciary is under threat,” he said.

“Judges and judicial officers, including myself, are being castigated without giving the opportunity to be heard, but God knows our heart.”

In a statement later signed by Awassan Bassey, his senior special assistant on media, Onnoghen also cautioned against individuals “dragging the name of the judiciary in the mud through unsubstantiated allegations in the mass media.”

He cited the allegations made by Uche Ekwunife, a senator who represented Anambra central in the senate, that the judiciary “robbed her of her mandate and that judicial officers in the country today are being castigated.”

He urged anybody with any grievances against the judiciary to go through the right channel to petition their allegations.

The CJN, who was accompanied by some justices of the supreme court alongside family members, also thanked God for seeing him to this stage in his career.

“I did not set out to be a judge but today, I am a judge by divine intervention. It’s the Lord’s doing, mine is to follow,” he said.

“My prayer is that God should help me and should not let me down.”