20°C / 22°C
  • Mon
  • 27°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 20°C
  • 10°C
  • Wed
  • 20°C
  • 5°C
  • Thu
  • 22°C
  • 1°C
  • Fri
  • 27°C
  • 7°C
  • Sat
  • 30°C
  • 8°C
  • Mon
  • 18°C
  • 10°C
  • Tue
  • 21°C
  • 14°C
  • Wed
  • 25°C
  • 12°C
  • Thu
  • 31°C
  • 17°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 23°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 30°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 22°C
  • 12°C
  • Wed
  • 22°C
  • 8°C
  • Thu
  • 23°C
  • 4°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 6°C
  • Sat
  • 30°C
  • 11°C
  • Mon
  • 30°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 23°C
  • 10°C
  • Wed
  • 20°C
  • 6°C
  • Thu
  • 23°C
  • 2°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 4°C
  • Sat
  • 31°C
  • 8°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 19°C
  • 14°C
  • Wed
  • 19°C
  • 12°C
  • Thu
  • 21°C
  • 12°C
  • Fri
  • 24°C
  • 13°C
  • Sat
  • 24°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 17°C
  • 11°C
  • Tue
  • 18°C
  • 11°C
  • Wed
  • 19°C
  • 12°C
  • Thu
  • 27°C
  • 12°C
  • Fri
  • 27°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 19°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 5°C
  • Tue
  • 23°C
  • 8°C
  • Wed
  • 28°C
  • 10°C
  • Thu
  • 32°C
  • 15°C
  • Fri
  • 31°C
  • 18°C
  • Sat
  • 25°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 18°C
  • 10°C
  • Tue
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Wed
  • 23°C
  • 13°C
  • Thu
  • 29°C
  • 19°C
  • Fri
  • 25°C
  • 18°C
  • Sat
  • 22°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 32°C
  • 15°C
  • Tue
  • 22°C
  • 13°C
  • Wed
  • 24°C
  • 10°C
  • Thu
  • 24°C
  • 7°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 9°C
  • Sat
  • 31°C
  • 10°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 5°C
  • Tue
  • 24°C
  • 7°C
  • Wed
  • 23°C
  • 8°C
  • Thu
  • 24°C
  • 6°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 8°C
  • Sat
  • 29°C
  • 10°C
  • Mon
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 20°C
  • 11°C
  • Wed
  • 20°C
  • 7°C
  • Thu
  • 20°C
  • 5°C
  • Fri
  • 25°C
  • 4°C
  • Sat
  • 30°C
  • 6°C
  • Mon
  • 17°C
  • 9°C
  • Tue
  • 17°C
  • 8°C
  • Wed
  • 21°C
  • 9°C
  • Thu
  • 31°C
  • 15°C
  • Fri
  • 31°C
  • 15°C
  • Sat
  • 19°C
  • 14°C

UN expert says suspension of Nigeria's chief judge breaches human rights

The chief justice could preside over any dispute over the election result. Nigeria’s judiciary has helped resolve electoral disputes in past votes, some of which have been marred by violence and vote-rigging.

President Muhammadu Buhari swears-in Justice Ibrahim Tanko Mohammed as Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria. Picture: @NGRPresident/Twitter

GENEVA - The suspension of Nigeria’s most senior judge by President Muhammadu Buhari broke international human rights standards on the independence of the judiciary and the separation of powers, a UN expert said on Monday.

Buhari, who was a military ruler in the 1980s and was voted into office in 2015, is hoping to win a new term in a presidential election scheduled to take place on Saturday.

The chief justice could preside over any dispute over the election result. Nigeria’s judiciary has helped resolve electoral disputes in past votes, some of which have been marred by violence and vote-rigging.

“International human rights standards provide that judges may be dismissed only on serious grounds of misconduct or incompetence,” said Diego Garcia-Sayan, the UN special rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers.

“Any decision to suspend or remove a judge from office should be fair and should be taken by an independent authority such as a judicial council or a court,” he said in a statement.

Garcia-Sayan, who is mandated by the UN Human Rights Council to investigate legal and judicial independence, said dismissing judges without following legal procedures or offering a chance to contest the decision was incompatible with the independence of the judiciary.

Buhari suspended Chief Justice Walter Onnoghen on 25 January following an order by a tribunal on public officials’ conduct and replaced him with Ibrahim Tanko Mohammad.

But four courts superior to the tribunal had already ordered a stay of proceedings and the tribunal had previously said it lacked jurisdiction over cases involving judicial officers, Garcia-Sayan said.

The UN statement said some of the judges and the defence lawyers involved in Onnoghen’s case had been subject to serious threats, pressures and interference.

Comments

EWN welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

- Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
- Sexism
- Homophobia
- Religious intolerance
- Cyber bullying
- Hate speech
- Derogatory language
- Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the EWN community a safe and welcoming space for all.

EWN reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

EWN is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

comments powered by Disqus