Date Published: 02/08/11
Katsina-Alu vs Salami latest: The Chief Justice is a corrupt individual says President, Court of Appeal...Asked me to compromise Sokoto Gov Petition to favor Wamakko
President of the Court of Appeal, justice Ayo Salami has taken his beef with the Chief Justice of the Federation (CJN), Justice Aloysius Katina-Alu, to another level.
Salami on Tuesday pointedly accused Katsian-Alu of mounting pressure on him to ensure the Appeal Court ruled in favor of Sokoto State Governor, Aliyu Wamakko.
In his supporting affidavit, in a suit brought against the CJN, Salami alleged that the CJN asked him to compromise the Court of ApI have all along enjoyed my work as President of the Court of Appeal and did not have any issues or disagreement with the first defendant (Katsina- Alu) until the controversies over the gubernatorial election petition in Sokoto State came to light.
Salami said “Following my appointment as the President of the Court of Appeal, I found among the pending election petition appeals, the Sokoto State Gubernatorial Election Petition Appeal. I set up panels of the Appeal Court to dispose of the pending petitions including that of Sokoto.
I was, however, shocked when subsequent to the setting up of a panel on the Sokoto Gubernatorial Election Petition Appeal, and after all parties had filed and exchange briefs, adopted same and judgement reserved the first defendant summoned me by telephone to his office in Abuja.
The 1st defendant asked me to disband the panel I had set up for the appeal on the excuse that if the panel allowed the appeal and removed the governor, the ripple effect would lead to a removal of our highly revered Sultan of Sokoto.
The 1st defendant could not convince me on the logic predicating his reasoning more, especially as the Sultan was not a party to the election petition and as there is no nexus between any of the parties and the sultan, so I told him I would not disband the panel.
The 1st Defendant then said in the alternative that I should direct the panel of justices to decide against the Appellant.”
To this again, I still said No. That I would not do anything to pervert the cause of justice.
When the matter came before the 3rd Defendant (NJC), the committee set up to look into the complaint vindicated me and in clear terms told the 1st Defendant, he had no Constitutional and Statutory power to stop proceedings in any division of the Court of Appeal as he did.
Salami said he was asked by the CJN to either reconstitute the original panel, which he (Katsina-Alu) believed was about to give a verdict adverse to the governor’s interest or direct the panel to give judgment in the governor’s favour. QUESTIONS FOR DETERMINATION
(i) Whether where the 2nd Defendant in exercise or purported exercise of its powers under Part E, paragraph 13(a) of the Third Schedule to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, nominated any person for appointment to the Supreme Court, such a decision has any binding effect on such a person?
(ii) Whether where a person nominated for appointment to the Supreme Court by the 2nd Defendant has declined such appointment, the 3rd Defendant can still sit as a body under Section 153(1)(i) of the 1999 Constitution to exercise its power under Part I paragraph 21(a) of the said Constitution to recommend such a person to the President for approval?
(iii) Whether the appointment of the President of the Court of Appeal to the Supreme Court as a Justice of the Court without his consent and without any proven case of misconduct against him does not amount to removal from his office as President of the Court of Appeal contrary to the provisions of Section 292(1)(a)(i) of the 1999 Constitution?
(IV) Whether the Federal Judicial Service Commission has not violated the fundamental rights of the Plaintiff by taking a decision on a matter not on the agenda of the meeting and in respect of which the Plaintiff’s interest is to be prejudicially affected but was never heard?
WHEREUPON, the plaintiff seeks the following reliefs:
(i) DECLARATION that the decision of the 2nd Defendant reached at its meeting of 1st and or 2nd February, 2011 nominating or purporting to nominate the plaintiff to the 3rd Defendant for appointment as a Justice of the Supreme Court is not binding on the plaintiff.
(ii) DECLARATION that the plaintiff having rejected his purported nomination by the 2nd defendant for appointment to the Supreme Court, the 3rd Defendant cannot lawfully or properly sit as a body under Section 153(1)(i) of the 1999 Constitution to exercise its power under Part (I) paragraph 21(a) of the Third Schedule to the Constitution to recommend such appointment to the President for approval.
(iii) DECLARATION that any approval by the President of any recommendation by the 2nd and 3rd Defendants for the appointment of the plaintiff as a Justice of the Supreme Court is equivalent to a removal of the plaintiff from office as President of the Court of Appeal contrary to Section 292(1)(a)(i) of the 1999 Constitution.
(iv) DECLARATION that any appointment of the Plaintiff (who is currently the President of the Court of Appeal) to be a justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, without his consent and without any proven case of misconduct against him amounts to a removal from his office as President of the Court of Appeal contrary to the provisions of Section 292(1)(a)(i) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended.
(v) DECLARATION that the Federal Judicial Service Commission violated the Plaintiff’s constitutional right to fair hearing by taking a decision on a matter not on the agenda of the meeting and in respect of which the Plaintiff’s interest is to be prejudicially affected without given him the opportunity of being heard in breach of Plaintiff’s right to fair hearing.
(vi) AN ORDER setting aside any such recommendation or decision for the appointment of the plaintiff as a Justice of the Supreme Court.
(vii) INJUNCTION restraining the 3rd Defendant by itself, its agents, servants or privies or any of or all its members from sitting as a body under Section 153(1)(I) of the 1999 Constitution to exercise its power under paragraph 21(a) of Part I, of the 3rd Schedule to the said Constitution to recommend the plaintiff to the President for appointment to the Supreme Court.
(viii) INJUNCTION restraining the defendants jointly and/or severally, by themselves, and all officers, servants and functionaries of the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria or otherwise, howsoever, from recognising, acting on, doing anything in recognition of or putting into effect any decision of the Defendants purporting to appoint the Plaintiff to the Supreme Court as a Justice of the Court.