The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Mahmud Mohammed, has issued a fresh query to Justice Folahanmi Oloyede of the Osun State Judiciary, based on a petition written against her to the National Judicial Council by the Osun Civil Societies Coalition.
The OCSC, in the petition signed by one Mr. Waheed Lawal and two others dated July 28, 2015, asked the NJC to investigate the judge following her petition to the Osun State House of Assembly, where she accused Governor Rauf Aregbesola of financial recklessness.
A copy of the query, signed by the CJN with Ref. No. NJC/S.29/HC.OS/16/1/107, written to Oloyede through the Chief Judge of Osun State, Justice Adepele Ojo, and dated August 25, was said to have been delivered to the embattled judge last Wednesday.
It would be recalled that the judge had only recently been queried by the NJC on the strength of petition written by a mother of four, Mrs. Emily Richard-Obire, who accused her of co-habiting with her husband.
Justice Oloyede was cleared when it was discovered that an Ikeja High Court had dissolved the woman’s marriage to the man she accused the judge of snatching.
However, the fresh query read, “Re: Request for investigation of Justice Oloyede Olamide Folahanmi.
“I forward herewith a petition, dated 28th July, 2015, against you by Comrade Waheed Lawal and two members of Osun Civil Societies Coalition, on the above subject matter.
“The petition speaks for itself. I shall be glad to have your comments within 14 days from the date of your receipt of this letter, please”.
The group asked the NJC to sanction Oloyode in order to prevent other judges, who might want to follow in her footsteps, by allegedly surrendering themselves to be used by politicians, to a predetermined end.
The OCSC accused Oloyede of partisanship and failure to conduct herself in a manner to preserve the dignity of her office.
The petition read, “The petition (against Aregbesola) contained statements calculated to incite the residents of the state against the state government and its elected officers. More bewildering are the words and language used by the petitioner and the brazing manner which caused the petition to be circulated to the public.
“It behoves on us to say that the words and language in the petition are unbecoming, maladroit and ungainly for the high standard of conduct expected of any judicial officer in this country.
“The magnitude of impropriety, of the form, dimension and concealed message of the petition violates every ethical standard devoted to the status of a judicial officer.
“If appropriate action was not meted on her (Justice Folahanmi), a floodgate will be opened and every willing and available judicial officer would soon become an instrument of use for the purpose of partisan politics”.