According to Okpoko:I do not know how a man who started life as a magistrate can rise and become CJ of Nigeria

As per the Vanguard report, Chief Thompson Okpoko (SAN), a former president of the Nigeria Bar Association, has questioned the reasoning behind the restriction that only judges can be appointed to the Supreme Court. CONTINUE FULL READING>>>>>

He highlights that this disqualifies numerous competent legal experts who could potentially serve as exceptional judges.

He contrasts the Nigerian system with the American judicial system, where it is not uncommon for non-judges with exceptional legal knowledge and experience to be appointed to the Supreme Court. He argues that this policy is detrimental to the legal system as it limits the pool of potential candidates to only judges, thus potentially reducing the overall quality of the judiciary.

He said, “The judges study law as taught and written by Professors of law. There are lawyers of outstanding quality whose submissions and research have shown what the law is. The duty of the judge is to consider the facts of the case and apply the law. If those who teach this law, those who make submissions on the law, and those who research the law are not qualified to be judges of that court, I don’t know how a man who started life as a magistrate can rise to that position and become Chief Justice of Nigeria. I think the policy that excludes non-judges from getting to the Supreme Court is wrong. We say we are copying America, is that what America is doing?”CONTINUE FULL READING>>>>>

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