Friday, 23 September 2011

Nigeria: New Chief Justice may not have long

Reports state that the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) Justice Dahiru Musdapher may not hold office for more than six months. This despite the fact that Musdapher, who took over as CJN from the controversial Justice Aloysius Katsina-Alu, is set to be screened by the Senate in order to confirm him as CJN. According to sources, Musdapher may soon be replaced by Justice Aloma Mariam Mukhtar, one of the few female Justices of the Nigerian Supreme Court.

If Mukhtar is appointed, she will make history as the first female CJN. In contrast to the general perception of Musdapher as Katsina-Alu's man, Mukhtar is considered capable of turning around the declining reputation and integrity of the Judiciary, which has been seriously undermined by the open warfare between now-former CJN Katsina-Alu and the erstwhile President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Isa Ayo Salami.

This conflict continues to reverberate through the political system. Sources have now revealed the involvement of Chairman of the Senate Committee on Justice, Senator Umaru Dahiru. His purported involvement is related to the Sokoto State gubernatorial election tribunal, which was the basis for the allegations made against Katsina-Alu by Salami.

For more news and expert analysis about Nigeria, please see Nigeria Focus and Nigeria Politics & Security.

© 2011 Menas Associates

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