From Chijioke Agwu, Abakaliki, Abakaliki
Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF), yesterday, petioned President Muhammadu Buhari and the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Tanko Mohammed to protest alleged manipulation of ongoing appointment of justices of the Court of Appeal to deny the South East its quota.
ADF said based on federal character as enshrined in the 1999 Constitution that the South East zone is entitled to a quota in the appointment of the Justices of the Appeal Court but claimed there was manipulation in high places to deliberately deny the zone its quota.
In the petition signed by its President, Uzodinma Nwala, and the Coordinator, Legal Bureau, Max Ozoaka, ADF called on the authorities to intervene in the “ongoing exercise by the National Judicial Council(NJC), which made recommendations for appointment of certain persons as Justices of the Court of Appeal, because of the unfortunate, improper and unjustifiable decision of the NJC to marginalize and emasculate the South-East geo-political zone in the exercise.
“It was very unjust and unfair for only one justice to be appointed from the South East out of 20 justices that are being appointed from the six geopolitical zones, whereas the other zones were allocated as follows: North-West (8), North- East (3), North-Central (2), South-West (4) and South-South(2)”
It described the recommendation by the NJC as a brazen act of injustice and inequity meted against the South-East and appealed to President Buhari and the CJN Justice Tanko Mohammed to intervene and save the situation.
They argued that to allow the current exercise characterised by lack of transparency and political maneuvers to sail through “would be antithetical to the evolution of an upright judiciary”
ADF further noted that “the only way to bring about the integrity of the Judiciary and citizens confidence is by ensuring that the process of appointment of persons to such high positions is in accordance with due process”.