Put your personal ambitions aside – CJN warns 11 new S’Court Justices

The Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, on Monday, swore in 11 new Justices to the bench of the Supreme Court, charging them not to allow their personal ambitions to becloud their sense of judgement.

He said the interaction of the new Justices with people of unviable inclinations and pedigree, if any, must be halted forthwith and they should allow their conscience to guide and filter every of the thought that crosses their mind.

Speaking further at the swearing-in ceremony held at the main courtroom of the Supreme Court, the CJN told the new Justices to be prepared for criticisms or verbal assaults by litigants who have lost cases as Justices of the final court of the land, where appellants’ expectations are often very high and infectious.

“There is no way you can please human beings, especially litigants. The easiest way to fail in life is by trying to please everyone. The only deity you can fear, is the Almighty God”, he said.

“Once your judgement is in consonance with what God expects from you, and is also in accordance with the Constitution, you should consider yourself the happiest and freest person on earth.”

The CJN told them that their elevation to the Supreme Court bench is in recognition of their astuteness and evident passion for hard work, which is the hallmark of judicial excellence.

Justice Ariwoola said administering oath of office to the 11 new Justices was unprecedented in the annals of the Nigerian Supreme Court and recalled his speech last year, where he lamented that the inability of the Court to meet up the statutory full complement of 21 Justices had lingered for too long and promised to break the jinx.

He told them that they are coming to join the Supreme Court bench at a time when the rank had been grossly depleted to an all-time low of 10 Justices for a number of reasons, mainly retirement and deaths.

He urged them to put in their best as seasoned judicial officers transiting from the Court of Appeal and had established remarkable acquaintances with judicial oath and roles guiding the conduct of judicial officers.

“Your moral uprightness, integrity and respect for the constitution and other extant laws in operation, must be unwavering and unassailable”, he said.

He urged them to see themselves as the representatives of God on earth, because “any judgment given at this level can only be upturned in heaven”.


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