By Jonathan Nda- Isaiah, Abuja
The fountain of the rule demands the professional cooperation and rigorous commitment to ethical practices and processes by the bar and the bench to sustain its glow of justice and delivery of fairness to all in every progressive society.
Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Mohammed stated this while receiving a high powered delegation of the African Bar Association (AfBA) led by the president, Mr Hannibal Uwaifo at the Supreme Court chambers in a parley to deepen a working convergence of their critical roles to promote and protect good governance and human rights in the African continent.
Welcoming the group with other accomplished Justices of the Supreme
Court, the chief justice noted that it is a thing of settled joy that the people of Africa as indeed Nigeria, and the world at large are in universal agreement that the rule of law is the true lustre of good
governance, the cornerstone for peace, and the engine that gives growth and development the sprint for acceleration.
He said it is too critical for any lapse of attention to it and the eternal vigilance belongs to the bar and the bench as coworkers in the temple of justice.
Uwaifo while addressing the CJN and other justices described the Supreme Court bench as one of the best in Africa, carrying out its duties with salutary dedication and inspiring equanimity.
He also emphasized that the present Supreme Court bench as led by
Justice Muhammad has never stopped anyone or body from criticising the
Court, nor have they joined issues with anyone in the arena.
Uwaifo observed that since by law the judgement of the Court is final, such comportment is judicially exemplary, as a candid remark to all, of the impartiality of their opinions and judgements.
He praised Hon Justice Muhammad for his continuous admonition of lawyers to do away with advocating technical justice at the expense of the substance of justice, pledging the support of the African Bar Association and lawyers in Africa in this regard.
Uwaifo then highlighted the activities of the association and progress made across the continent and beyond, especially in the areas of human rights protection, elections monitoring, peace advocacy and crisis management based on the principles of constitutionality and the rule of law, and climaxed it with an invitation to the CJN and other justices
to kindly oblige them their participation in the next conference of the association to hold in Niamey, Niger Republic from 1st – 5th August, 2021.
The chief justice thanked theassociation for the visit and appreciated the commentsand suggestions made by the president of the African Bar Association.
He made it clear that judges of the Supreme Court bench know what they
are doing and work very hard to arrive at decisions emphasising that no one, no matter how highly placed or close, can ever influence the decisions of the court.