Upper Area Court Judge Who Issued Criminal Summon On Chukwuma Soludo In Trouble
By Frank Ajufo
The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Tanko Muhammad has directed the Judicial Service Committee, (JSC) of the Federal Capital Territory FCT to initiate disciplinary action against the Upper Area Court Judge who issued direct Criminal Summons against a former governor of the Central Governor of Nigeria CBN Professor Chukwuma Soludo.
Though the judge's name is yet to be mentioned, but it was revealed that the said judge issued the criminal charges against the Prof. Soludo who is the governorship candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, (APGA) in the forthcoming Anambra State governorship elections, over alleged serial abuse of office and breach of public officers' Code of Conduct while he served as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), between May 29, 2004 - May 29, 2009.
Recall that an Upper Area Court had on 23 August 2021 issued a direct Criminal Summons against Soludo over perjury, corruption and false assets declaration, an action that has been found to be outside the jurisdiction of the Court.
Meanwhile, the power to try criminal charges on false declaration of assets is said to be under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, (CCT).
Contrary to the provision of the 1999 Constitution (Amended), the Upper Area Court Judge erroneously assumed jurisdiction.
Following the prompting of the CJN, the FCT Judicial Service Committee under the Chairmanship of the Acting Chief Judge, Hussein Yusuf, will discipline the Judge in line with regulatory laws.
According to our source, "from all indications, the Chief Justice of Nigeria and Chairman National Judicial Council (CJN), Hon. Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad seems determined to put an end to impunity and misconduct in the Judiciary".
The Disciplinary Committee is expected to submit a report of its findings to the CJN within 21 days.