Buhari okays compulsory retirement for Justice Akanbi
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the compulsory retirement of Hon. Justice Lambo Akanbi of the Federal High Court, Port-Harcourt Division with immediate effect.
According to an electronic statement by the Acting Director of Information of the National Judicial Council (NJC), Barrister Soji Oye, “the approval is based on the recommendation of the NJC after its 74th meeting which was held on 4th and 5th November, 2015 following the various allegations levelled against him by Shell Petroleum Company Nigeria Limited.”
The said electronic statement reads in part: “The allegations levelled against Justice Akanbi and contained in the petition are inter-alia:-
“That Justice Akanbi unilaterally appointed Mr. Emeka Nkwo of CYN-JAC (NIG) LTD who was not proposed by any of the parties as referee or valuer in Suit Nos FHC/PH/CS/434/2012 and FHC/PH/CS/435/2012.
He also appointed the same referee or valuer in Suit FHC/PH/CS/25/2003, which is another matter involving one of the parties in the first suit.
“That he heard and concluded the case without dealing with the Notice of Preliminary Objection on the jurisdiction of his court.
“That he sat on the case in the Federal High Court, Yenegoa in Suit FHC/YNG/CS/30/2013 after a new judge had been transferred to the state without a fiat from the Hon. Chief Judge of the Federal High Court.
That the judge also delivered the Ruling in Suit No FHC/PH/CS/07/2009, four months after final addresses were taken without any cogent reason, contrary to the constitutional provisions that judgment should be delivered within a period of 90 days.
“That Justice Akanbi also dismissed the application to set aside the report prepared by the valuer, CYN – JAC (NIG) LTD and later changed the ruling to judgement which prevented the respondent from pursuing the application for stay of proceedings at the Court of Appeal.
“That Justice Akanbi also failed to give a copy of his ruling delivered on 12th June, 2013 to the complainant until 28th June, 2013.
“In the exercise of its constitutional powers, at the same meetings of 4th and 5th November, 2015, Council had suspended Justice Akanbi from office before the approval for his compulsory retirement by President Muhammadu Buhari.”