From Chuks Onuoha, Umuahia.
Abia State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, has sworn in Justice Arisa Onuoha Kalu Ogwe as acting chief judge, following the directives the National Judicial Commission (NJC), against an earlier swearing in of Justice Obisike Orji, who has been suspended by the Commission.
Last week, the NJC faulted the swearing in of justice Orji, by governor Ikpeazu, after a resolution passed by the Abia State House of Assembly, suspending the Chief Judge, Justice Theresa Uzokwe, on allegations of tyranny, gross misconduct, incompetence and infamy.
Governor Ikpeazu, in his charge to the acting chief judge, after he was sworn in at the Execuive Chambers, at the Government House, disclosed that the action of the State government was in compliance with NJC directive.
Ikpeazu maintained that the action of the state government was appropriate.
“Our desire is to stabilise the judicial system in the state. In the search of this, this state is determined to abide with the directives of the NJC.”
He charged Ogwe to assist his administration “stabilise the judicial system, for the common good of the people in the state.”
In his acceptance speech, Justice Ogwe thanked Ikpeazu for accepting NJC directives.
“You have acquitted yourself as a man. I am already a judge and what I have been asked to do is to provide leadership for my brothers,” said Ogwe.
The acting chief judge also promised to work peacefully with the state government which he described as the “biggest arm of governance in the state.”
Earlier, at a media briefing yesterday morning, in a bid to justify the state government’s position on NJC’s directive, Commissioner for Justice and Anthony General, Umeh Kalu said the state government, having received the position of the NJC, is committed to the rule of law.