President Muhammadu Buhari has charged the judiciary to remain neutral in determination of election related cases as the nation draws closer to the 2023 general elections.
He said that as the time nears, the significance of the legal profession becomes even more pronounced, considering the vital roles it plays in pre and post-election stages.
“I hope you maintain the position of an honest arbiter,” Buhari said. The President, who assured of his commitment to improvement of the welfare of judges, urged them to always ensure justice.
He said: “A society where justice thrives is one that can be assured of development. For Nigeria to effectively embrace sustainable development, institutions, such as the legal profession, must remain deeply committed towards promoting good governance.”
Buhari spoke in Abuja, yesterday, at the commissioning of the Body of Benchers Complex. Earlier, Chairman of the Body of Benchers, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), called for a more virile and independent judiciary, noting that the Constitution thrives on the doctrine of separation of powers.
He expressed concern over complaints of poor conditions of service by judges across the country. Olanipekun noted that as part of efforts to address the challenge, the Body of Benchers set up a standing committee known as the Body of Benchers Judiciary Advisory Committee, to interface with members of the Bench and take up their concerns and frustrations with appropriate authorities.
He said the committee is also saddled with “the task of comparing packages available to judicial officers in other jurisdictions.”
He explained that the complex consists of a 3,000-seater auditorium, a 240-seater meeting room, a 1,000-seater banquet hall, a 1,000-seater multipurpose hall, committee meeting room, offices for secretariat staff, library and a courtroom for the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee, among others.