Yakubu Maikyau, the new president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), says judges found to be corrupt will be called out and made to face the consequences.
Maikyau said this on Saturday while speaking to journalists at a ceremony organised in his honour as the newly-elected president of the NBA, in Abuja.
“We have this general accusation that judges are corrupt. Of course, we do know that we have bad eggs. It’s just that we haven’t laid our hands on them in terms of the concrete proof with which we can pursue them, call them out, and get them to face the music,” he said.
“In spite of that, we are also very good, upright, forthright and honest judges. But what has pervaded the entire airway is the allegation or the narrative that judges are generally corrupt, which is not true.
“So, I’m saying that we must begin to do what we need to do to change the narrative. For those that we find to be corrupt, we will call them out. For members of the bar that we find to be complicit in any act of corruption, we’ll also call them out and cause the relevant rules to be applied in terms of the discipline of any person, and where crimes are committed, are also reported to the appropriate authorities, for them to be prosecuted.
“And that is the way in which the Nigerian Bar Association can actually change that narrative. If we find you to be corrupt amongst the judges, we call you out and excise you from the judiciary. If you’re a member of the bar, and you are participating in that corrupt practice, we’ll also deal with you.
“The legal practitioners disciplinary committee has the powers to recommend appropriate punishment, including taking your name off the role of lawyers in this country so that you can go and continue to do other things.”
Celebrating the NBA president in her remarks, Amina Augie, a justice of the supreme court, described Maikyau as “my son in whom I am well pleased”.
“For all to be here today, both members of the bench and the bar, under one roof, I really consider it a very divine and auspicious occasion,” she said.
“It is not coincidental that both the CJN and the NBA president are here today. They both assumed office the same period and both of them have two years each to spend in office.
“We want to remind them that we will be watching them in the next two years and that when their tenure expires, in their scorecard, we expect to score them 100 percent.”
Some of the dignitaries present at the event included Olukayode Ariwoola, CJN; Muhammad Abubakar, governor of Jigawa; Mohammed Adoke, former attorney-general of the federation; and Atiku Bagudu, Kebbi governor.
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