Misconduct: Lawyer Kicks Over NJC’s Failure to Act on Petition against Justice Peter-Odili
Lawyer and human rights activist, Timipa Jenkins Okponipere has accused the National Judicial Council (NJC) of protecting a judge and wife of a former governor of Rivers State, Justice Mary Ukaego Peter-Odili, despite allegations of judicial misconduct and abuse of privilege against her.
Okponipere in a statement sent to SaharaReporters wondered why the NJC refused to act on his petition against Peter-Odili nine months after submission.
He noted that the judge, though highly-placed, is not above the Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The statement read, “My dear fellow Nigerians, on the 17th day of July, 2020, I petitioned the National Judicial Council (NJC) in Abuja on oath by way of an Affidavit of Urgency in respect of His Lordship, The Honourable Justice Mary Ukaego Peter-Odili, JSC for alleged judicial misconduct and abuse of judicial privilege, among others.
“It is now 9 months since after the submission of my petition. The NJC has yet to determine it. Indeed, I have written several letters of reminder to the NJC; appealing for a just and speedy determination of my petition.
“After 9 months of waiting patiently, I am no longer in doubt that the NJC is deliberately and wilfully shielding His Lordship, The Honourable Justice Mary Ukaego Peter-Odili, JSC from judicial scrutiny and discipline. This is most unfortunate, unlawful and provocative. It is the clearest confirmation of the existence of monumental judicial corruption at the highest hierarchy of the Nigerian judicial system.
“No matter how highly placed, His Lordship, The Honourable Justice Mary Ukaego Peter-Odili, JSC is certainly not above the Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. I repeat: His Lordship, The Honourable Justice Mary Ukaego Peter-Odili, JSC is not above the Laws of our Land. I repeat for the umpteenth time: His Lordship, The Honourable Justice Mary Ukaego Peter-Odili, JSC is not above the Laws of our country!
“I am therefore seizing this unique opportunity to call on the NJC to speedily consider and determine the petition in respect of His Lordship, The Honourable Justice Mary Ukaego Peter-Odili, JSC.
“Secondly, my dear Compatriots, I hereby equally use this opportunity to notify the Nigerian people about another petition on Oath which I submitted sometime in August, 2020 to the Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee (LPPC) in respect of Messrs. JB Daudu, SAN; EC Ukala, SAN and Lawal-Rabana, SAN.
“Several months have passed since the submission of my petition to the LPPC. I reasonably believe that my petition would not be given the attention it deserves; given the status and personality of the legal practitioners involved.
“I am therefore, once again, using this unique opportunity to appeal to the LPPC to speedily and decisively determine my petition against the erring legal practitioners in the overall interest of Justice and the Rule of Law.”
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