NJC Sacks Abia Chief Judge Uzokwe, One Other
The National Judicial Council NJC has recommend to Governor of Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu, two judges for compulsory retirement with immediate effect.
The affected judges are Justice Theresa Uzokwe, Chief Judge of Abia State and Justice Obisike Oji of Abia State High Court.
The NJC took the decision at its meeting, which held on March 14.
The NJC had earlier suspended Justice Uzokwe and issued a query to Justice Oji for allowing himself to be sworn-in as Acting Chief Judge when the Abia State House of Assembly purportedly sacked Uzokwe.
In a statement by NJC spokesperson, Soji Oye, Justices Uzokwe and Oji were found guilty of misconduct.
“Hon. Mr Justice Theresa Uzokwe was recommended for compulsory retirement following the findings of two investigative committees set up by the Council. The committees investigated petitions against her by Umeh Kalu, SAN, Attorney-General/Commissioner for Justice of Abia State, alleging illegal constitution and working with a parallel Judicial Service Commission instead of the one constituted by the State Governor and confirmed by the House of Assembly.
“Hon. Mr Justice Uzokwe was also found to have misconducted himself in Suit No. HU/131/2005, wherein he delivered judgement in the sum of N825, 000 (Eight Hundred and Twenty-five Thousand Naira) only in favour of a Litigant, but subsequently signed a garnishee order of N109, 612, 500 (One Hundred and Nine Million, Six Hundred and Twelve Thousand, Five Hundred Naira) only.
“Hon. Mr Justice Obisike Oji was earlier queried by the Council for allowing himself to be sworn-in as acting Chief Judge, and thereby colluding in, and aiding an unconstitutional process. His reply was unsatisfactory and the Council recommended his compulsory retirement.