The suspended Hon. Justice G.K Olotu of the Federal High Court Abuja has petitioned the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Hon Justice Aloma Mariam Muktar, following her alleged suspension.
Also, petitioned by the judge was the three-man investigation committee of the National Judicial Council (NJC), describing the petition that warranted her suspension as malicious and in bad faith.
She was suspended following a petition against her by Harvey Ideozu and S.V Harry on behalf of ponticelli Nigeria Limited in respect of suits numbers FHC/UY/CS/250/2003 and FHC/PH/CS/450/2010.
The cases were between Mona Yousseffian Versus Ponticelli Nigeria Limited and Mona Yousseffian Versus Standard Chartered Bank.
The petitions alleged that the trial judge obtained a fiat to conclude the suit after she was transferred.
Furthermore, they brought the allegation of judicial frustration of the course of justice by justice Olotu, adding that all the witnesses in the case had testified while the final addresses had been filed before she was transferred which triggered her suspension.
However, in her petitions to NJC and the Chief Justice of the Federation Hon Justice Aloma Muktar, which was made available to the newsmen, Monday, Hon Justice Olotu debunked the allegation against her by the petitions.
The separate petitions by Justice Olotu were dated 2nd April, 2013 and 5th February, 2014 respectively through Hon Justice Ibrahim Ndali Auta and the Hon Chief Judge’s chambers.
According to Olotu, “on 11th February, 2011, I received the Honourable Chief judge’s letter Reference No. FHC/P/3000/111/44 of 31st January 2011 asking me to proceed to Abuja on transfer”
“On receipt of this letter, I became functus officio as far as the cases in the Port Harcourt Division were concerned”
“I proceeded to Abuja and left all the Port Harcourt cases behind, I did not carry anyone with me to Abuja as alleged by the petitioner”
“So strictly and technically speaking, I do not have jurisdiction over those cases again, it is the judge who was posted to take over my place in Port Harcourt that is now seized of jurisdiction over those cases or the Uyo Division of this court from where the cases originated in the first instance”
“However, I wish to state that I have no power of my own or intention to convey or carry the petitioner’s cases or any other case from Port Harcourt to Abuja”
“So there will be no need for me to be refrained or restrained from moving their files or continuing with proceedings in their case” she wrote.