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Court Quashes Bid To Reinstate Salami

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SAN FRANCISCO, March 18, (THEWILL) – The bid by the Registered Trustees of Centre for the Promotion of Arbitration to compel the National Judicial Council (NJC) to reinstate the suspended former President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ayo Isa Salami has suffered a major setback.

This is as a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, presided by Justice Adamu Bello, Monday, struck out a suit filed by the body for lacking the requisite locus standi.

Justice Bello, who held that the members of the organisation lacked the requisite locus standi to institute the action, maintained that the subject matter of the case was the removal from office of the embattled former President of the Court of Appeal and that the interest in the case is a private one relating to the rights of Justice Salami.

In dismissing the suit, the judge maintained that no other person or party can seek to redress the wrong in a matter that involves private interest except the person whose interest had been breached.

"I am of the strong view that the subject matter of this present suit is the private rights of Justice Salami, it pertains to him and no other to seek his reinstatement.

" This suit is not about public right interest but of a private right of Justice Salami. He was not the plaintiff in this matter but was made a defendant. It is Salami's legal rights that is affected and only he can seek redress, " the judge said.

According to Justice Bello, the suit would have been sustained had the ousted former President of the Court of Appeal been made a co-plaintiff in the matter rather than being made a defendant in a matter that he ought to be pursuing himself.

He therefore dismissed the suit without any cost.

It would be recalled that Justice Salami had been on suspension since August 18, 2011 when the NJC found him guilty of “gross misconduct” following his refusal to apologise to former Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Aloysius Katsina-Alu.

He was later recalled by the NJC which said that he was not at fault. NJC had also insisted that it is within its constitutional powers to recall and reinstate Justice Salami as the President of the Court of Appeal and does not need the president’s authority to do so.