Recall Of Suspended Judges: NJC Misrepresents Facts – FG

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By Kunle Olasanmi, Abuja

The federal government has accused the National Judicial Council, NJC,of misrepresenting facts on the recall of the judges earlier suspended over allegation of corruption.

A statement from the office of the Special Assistant to the President on Public Prosecution,signed by Okoi Obono-Obla, debunked some of the assertions contained in the statement issued by Soji Oye, Director of Information at the NJC.

According to Obla, one of such false assertions by Soji Oye is the claim “that the Office of Attorney General of the Federation had on two occasions April 18, 2017 and April 21, 2017 shunned invitations by the Federal Capital Territory High Court for settlement of records of appeal which, if it had done would have elevated the notices of appeal to proper appeal’’.

He said undoubtedly, the statement of Soji Oye is a deliberate misrepresentation of the law and facts.

a“It goes without saying that the assertion of Soji Oye that the Office of the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation had on two occasions viz, April 18, 2017 and April 21 2017, respectively shunned the invitation of the FCT High Court registry is not correct.

“I challenged Soji Oye to furnish us with proof of service of these notice which the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation shunned.

It is obvious that Soji Oye in his haste to defend the indefensible muddled up the law concerning the role of an Appellant and the registry of the Court where an appeal is emanating from.

In the interest of the discerning public and the need to the record straight, I wish to state as follows: By Order 8 of the Court of Appeal Rules, 2016, the Registrar of the Court below has a duty to compile and transmit the Record of Appeal to the Appeal Court. This he has 60 days to do; commencing from the day the Notice of Appeal is filed. And it is immaterial that parties do not attend court for purpose of settlement of the said Record.

“It is only where the Registrar fails or neglects to transmit the Record of Appeal in accordance with Order 8, Rules 1-3, that the Appellant may intervene upon the expiration of the initial 60 days, to compile and transmit the Record of Appeal. And the Appellant has additional 30 days to do so. See Order 8, Rule 4 of the Court of Appeal Rules 2016.

“In the instant case, I am unaware of any notice for settlement of Record of Appeal served on the Office of the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation apart from that issued on the 6th day of June, 2017 against the 14th day of June 2017, just after the filing of Additional Notice of Appeal. And even that was issued at the instance of the office of the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation”.