APPARENTLY trying to avoid being drawn into electoral disputes, Justice Mahmud Mohammed, chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, has asked politicians to keep away from his residence and office.
Mohammed has also decided that his security detail from the Department of State Service, DSS, and police orderly would henceforth be part of any interaction with politically exposed lawyers seeking audience with him.
In any case, the CJN has stopped to accept requests for courtesy calls by governors and legislators with outstanding cases against them at election tribunals or with court cases generally.
The new measures by Mohammed was said to have been dictated by subtle moves by some petitioners trying to drag the judiciary into politics. Specifically, there were media reports of two visits by Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State to the CJN’s office in Abuja, recently.
Although Wike did not meet the CJN, his visit raised some unpleasant comments in the political circles. To avoid future occurrence, sources said Mohammed had seriously warned his aides and household members not to welcome politicians to his residence. “He has limited all transactions or relationship to his office,” a source was quoted as saying.
Apart from that, the CJN has also decided to limit courtesy visits by public officials. “The new guidelines take immediate effect. The position of the CJN remains the same that the Judiciary must be insulated from politics. As a matter of fact, what the public did not know is that the CJN deliberately avoided meeting with Governor Nyesom Wike to avoid dragging the Judiciary into the murky waters of politics,” the source said.
— Aug 3, 2015 @ 01:00 GMT