* As ex-NJC Secretary, Halilu calls for inclusion of lower courts in ongoing reforms
The Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Walter Onnoghen, has assured that Nigerians will soon appreciate the roles of judiciary as the reform put in place beginning to yield positives results.
He said that Nigerians and others who make use of the courts will in no distant time begin to experience a better judiciary.
Justice Onnoghen stated this in Abuja on Wednesday during a retirement ceremony organized for former Executive Secretary of National Judicial Council (NJC), Danladi Halilu, who retired from the council in August this year.
The CJN said, “This event is designed to honour retired staff of the NJC. To give them hope that there is light at the end of the tunnel. I hereby commend them for making positive perception of judiciary.
“In no distant time, Nigeria will come to appreciate the role of the NJC. The nation’s judiciary will soon be better with all the ongoing reforms that are have been put in place.
“The Judiciary and all the agencies under it should adhere strictly to the code of conduct, as the judiciary under my watch will not condole any act of deviance”.
Responding, Halilu commended the various ongoing reforms in the judiciary.
He called for the inclusion of lower courts in the Federation in the ongoing reforms agenda, so as to achieve meaningful success in the entire justice delivery sector.
Halilu said there is need for lower courts to turn in their returns of cases to their various State Judicial Service Commissions and the Judicial Service Committee of the Federal Capital Territory.
He also noted that the dignity and stability of Government in all branches, the morals of the people, and every blessing of society, depend upon an upright and skillful administration of justice.
He said, “The report on the returns of cases in respect of superior courts of record at the level of NJC has been very helpful to administration of justice.
“It is necessary for the various laws on administration of the pension of retired Judicial Officers in the Federation to be harmonised and the payment of pension of the State retired Judicial Officers be also made by the NJC.
“This will guarantee the security of officers, in particular of the state Judicial officers who in some states are hardly paid their gratuities and or pension after retirement from office.
“It is against this background, that I acknowledge and applaud President Muhammadu Buhari administration for increasing the funding of the Federal Judiciary in 2017 appropriation.
“This unprecedented allocation to the Judiciary by the Federal Government, among others, made it possible for NJC to pay the reviewed and harmonized pensions of retired Federal Judicial Officers, including the backlog of their arrears”.
Andrew Orolua, Abuja.