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EKITI/OSUN APPEAL JUDGMENTS SAGA: GROUP URGES THOROUGH INVESTIGATION

By Lere Olayinka
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A Socio-Political group in Ekiti State, the Ekiti Positive Forum (EPF) has urged the Justice Umaru Abdulai-led National Judicial Council

(NJC) panel to save the nation's judiciary from imminent collapse by conducting a thorough and unbiased investigation into the allegations of unethical behaviours and corrupt practices against the Court of Appeal (PCA), Justice Isa Ayo Salami and other justices of the appellate court that handled the Ekiti and Osun States governorship appeal cases.

Rising from its meeting in Ado-Ekiti yesterday, EPF said in a communiqué signed by its secretary, Evang. Gbenga Adekunle that; “allegations like these, if not thoroughly investigated and those found culpable brought to book, are capable of bringing the judiciary into disrepute, a trend that portends grave danger for the survival of our nascent democracy.”

The group said; “As it is now, Nigerians now doubt the integrity of court judgments and members of the bench, and any society where court pronouncements are not respected is in trouble.

“Therefore, the NJC, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), State Security service (SSS) and other relevant government agencies must conduct a thorough and unbiased investigation into the allegations with a view to bringing to justice all those that have turned our courts to a market place where judgments are purchased by highest bidders.”

While also urging Justice Salami to follow the path of honour by stepping aside as President of the Court of Appeal to allow for an unbiased investigation, the group said; “It has even become more than ever necessary for Justice Salami to step aside now that his own judgment has become a subject of litigation at the Appeal Court, Ado-Ekiti. Or will it be right for the PCA to remain as the head of the appellate court while his own case is being looked into by the same court?”

Commending former governor, Asiwaju Segun Oni for “standing up against the cabal that appears to have purchased the conscience of Justice Salami and his 'eight trusted wise men' of the appellate court, EPF said; “All lovers of justice and rule of law must stand up to be counted in this laudable crusade aimed at bringing sanity into our judiciary.”