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NJC To Investigate Conflicting Court Orders In Kano Emirate Case

The National Judicial Council (NJC) has announced plans for an emergency meeting next week to address the ongoing controversy surrounding the Kano Emirate. This development comes amidst a flurry of conflicting court orders and calls for accountability from various stakeholders.

Recent rulings from both the Federal High Court and Kano State High Court regarding the Kano Emirate stool have sparked controversy due to their contradictory nature. This has raised concerns about impartiality within the judicial system.

In response, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) and Chairman of the NJC, Hon. Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, has summoned the Chief Judges of both courts involved. Hon. Justice John Tsoho of the Federal High Court and Hon. Justice Dije Aboki of the Kano State High Court is scheduled to meet with the CJN on Thursday, May 30, 2024.

A statement released by Mr. Soji Oye, Director of Information for the NJC, indicates that this initial meeting is a precursor to a more comprehensive investigation.

The statement reads:

“Sequel to the conflicting judgements emanating from the Federal High Court, and Kano State High Court of Justice on the chieftaincy matter in Kano State, the Chief Justice of Nigeria and Chairman, National Judicial Council, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, GCON, has summoned the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice John Tsoho, and Chief Judge of Kano State High Court, Justice Dije Aboki for an emergency meeting in his chambers tomorrow Thursday May 30, 2024.

“The meeting which is a prelude to the whole scale investigation by the National Judicial Council is to enable the CJN have a proper briefing on this very disturbing development by the two respective Chief Judges.”

The statement added that there was a strong indication that the “NJC will conduct an emergency meeting next week, where the subject judges are likely to be invited and subjected to serious investigations.”

The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has also weighed in on the situation. They are calling for disciplinary actions against lawyers and judges who were involved in issuing the contradictory court orders.

The NBA President, Mr Yakubu Maikyau, in a statement, yesterday, vowed to drag any lawyer found culpable in the matter before the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee (LPDC) for necessary sanctions.

“This is a subject that has been sufficiently dealt with by legislations and case law, leaving no one confused about the jurisprudence on the subject – both procedural and substantive.

“Without prejudice to the subsisting actions before both the Federal High Court and the Kano State High Court, it is my considered view that there is an urgent need to scrutinise the professional conducts of both counsel and the judges involved in these matters.

“This is to enable the relevant bodies or institutions to determine their culpability or otherwise, from an ethical and professional standpoint.

“I therefore call on the respective heads of the courts of the judges concerned, to take immediate steps to look into their conducts with the view to finding any possible abuse of their judicial offices and file a report with the National Judicial Council for necessary action.

“The NBA on the other hand will investigate the conducts of the counsel involved in these cases and shall not hesitate to commence disciplinary action against them before the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee, should there be any finding of alleged professional misconduct against them,” The NBA boss stated.

Meanwhile, prominent groups within two of the dissolved Emirates have spoken out. These groups, representing the Bichi and Rano Emirates, deny any political motivations behind their opposition to the abolition of the Emirates. They claim the Emirates have brought significant development to their respective regions.

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