The Chief Justice of Nigeria and Chairman of the National Judicial Council, Walter Onnoghen, has confirmed the resignation of retired Justice Ayo Salami as Chairperson of the Corruption and Financial Crimes Cases Trial Monitoring Committee.
Mr. Salami was appointed chairperson of the committee by the NJC in September, years after he left office as president of the Appeal Court under controversial circumstances.
A statement from the NJC’s Director of Communication, Soji Oye, announced the appointment, saying Mr. Salami would head a 15-member committee to implement the task of monitoring corruption cases in the country.
“The Committee’s primary functions include; Regular monitoring and evaluation of proceedings at designated courts for financial and economic crimes nationwide; Advising the Chief Justice of Nigeria on how to eliminate delay in the trial of alleged corruption cases; Giving feedback to the Council on progress of cases in the designated courts, conduct background checks on judges selected for the designated courts; and Evaluating the performance of the designated courts,” Mr. Oye said.
Mr. Onnoghen’s spokesperson, Awassam Bassey, confirmed to Journalists on Thursday that Mr. Salami had turned down the appointment.
“Besides what we see in the media, we cannot exactly say what Justice Salami’s reasons are for declining to undertake this all-important national assignment that he was called upon to perform,” he said.
“His Lordship the Hon Chief Justice of Nigeria awaits Hon Salami’s letter of resignation. That’s all I can say at this moment. A more detailed response will be communicated to you when we receive Hon. Mr. Justice Salami’s letter.”