Wike charge judiciary to protect its judges, swears in four

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Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has expressed sadness over the nation’s judiciary’s apparent inability to consistently protect its judges.Wike swears in four new judges, charge judiciary to protect its judges

The governor stated that judges who are devoted to maintaining the rule of law and making decisions based on the merits of the case before them would continue to be intimidated if they are not protected by their peers.

On Friday, Governor Wike made the remark when swearing in four new justices to the Rivers State High Court at Government House in Port Harcourt.

Popnen Sylvester Sunday, Daketima, Gabriel Kio, Chinelo Chidubem Odili, and Nsirim Chinwe Amanda are the four new judges.

Justices Popnen S.Sunday and Daketima G. Kio were both private legal practitioners before their elevation, while Justices Nsirim and Chinelo C. Odili were Chief Magistrates.

The governor predicted that as political activity peaks in 2022, judges will face more intimidation.

Most political gladiators, he claims, are hell-bent on getting their way in every legal matter that comes their way, and they never believe the court will rule against them.

Governor Wike stated that when judges feel that their colleagues will support them, they will be more willing to take on cases, even political matters, without fear of retaliation.

If what is going on now is not stopped by NJC, I can assure you no political matter will go before any judge and that judge will have any courage to handle such matter. The intimidation by NJC on these judges is quite alarming and I have to say it clearly, if you don’t give your judges support to do what they’re supposed to do, then let us better forget that in 2023 that we will have it easy,” Wike said.

The governor added that;

From next year (2022), it will be very turbulent and so matters will come before judges, allow them to dispense the matter the way they think it is. That is why there is always an appeal. But the moment any judge gives a decision, we politicians we must always write petition. That you cannot take away. No politician losses any case and thinks that there is nothing that went wrong.”

Governor Wike urged the new judges to take their jobs seriously, foster a positive work environment, and avoid unnecessary adjournments that lengthen the time it takes to resolve cases.

The governor advised them to recognize that every job and position comes with its own set of obstacles, and that it is in their best interests to try to be the best they can be.

But frankly speaking, yes, you’ve been appointed as a judge, but again there are responsibilities too. Some of you were private legal practitioners, two of you were former chief magistrates. As private legal practitioners, you’re used to blaming judges of not sitting on time, of not being serious with their work.
But by the grace of God, you have joined the league so that you’ll begin to sit on time and then take your work very serious, and make sure that judgements are given the way you wanted it when you were private legal practitioner. When a date is fixed, there should not be excuses to say that the judgment is not ready. Make sure that there is no unnecessary adjournments when judgement are fixed to be given,” Wike said.

Governor Wike also stated that the new year dinner has been canceled as a precautionary step to prevent the spread of Coronavirus in the state.

According to him, the state has already registered an alarming number of not less than 100 instances every day.

Governor Wike stated that his administration has already advised churches to lower worship attendance by 50%.


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