“Impartiality is our hallmark; be fair in your verdicts” – CJN to judges 

Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Olukayode Ariwoola, says impartiality is the hallmark of any judge.

Ariwoola stated this yesterday, at a special session to mark a new legal year and swearing-in ceremony of new Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SAN).

According to the CJN, judges must be impartial in all the judgments they deliver, saying, “Therefore, it is our solemn responsibility to keep the river clean at all times. Needless to say, impartiality is the hallmark of a judge.

“I admonish all of us to always be impartial in all our judgments. I am saying all these now because I will never have this great privilege and opportunity to address the galaxies of legal luminaries – judicial icons and distinguished personalities in the justice sector of our dear nation, in another legal year of the Supreme Court as Chief Justice of Nigeria – in my entire lifetime again”.

He reiterated the judiciary’s determination not to be overwhelmed by the sentiments of the “mob” in their decisions.

Following the rulings on electoral disputes, which led to the sacking of some governors and lawmakers, many have accused judges of bias. However, speaking at the opening of the special session of the 2023/2024 legal year and the swearing-in of 58 newly conferred Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs), Ariwoola asked judges to remain firm.

He said, “I expect every judicial officer to work very hard and also be very honest and courteous to the litigants, witnesses and members of the bar, and discharge all their judicial functions with all the humility at their command”.

The CJN pledged his commitment to safeguard the rule of law, the holistic independence of the Judiciary and the trust and confidence of the public.

He further assured that soon the Apex Court would enjoy its full complement of 21 justices to break the jinx of its inability to meet the Constitutional requirement.

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