Pension Fraud Trial Judge Suspended for One year by NJC

 Remember that story that left us all aghast, the one about one of these pen thieves who stole a tidy amount of billions from the Pension Commission and when the matter was taken to court the judge more or less set the dude free? Well, the National Judicial Council got tired of Nigerians jeering at them for that glaring slip up and have decided to make an example of the judge. Iam soooo happy! My week is made! There is hope for the common man in this country after all! But if you read through the story you will discover that even if he had done the right thing, the accused would have been given only a 2 yr jail sentence according to the charges brought by the EFCC. Hmmm. Just wondering if there is an Oga At the Top involved in this mess.
Also, I wanted to explain to you the role of the Judicial Commission but I went to their site and this is what I got, “The National Judicial Council is one of the Federal Executive Bodies created by virtue of Section 153 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. In order to insulate the Judiciary from the whims and caprices of the Executive; hence guarantee the independence of this Arm of Government, which is a sine qua non for any democratic Government, the National Judicial Council was created and vested with enormous powers and functions:” plenty grammar no? LOL!
Anyway, just read through the story below.
The judge who presided over the pension scam trial and gave light sentence to one of the accused persons, has been suspended for one year without pay by the National Judicial Council (NJC). JusticeAbubakar Talba of the FCT High Court imposed a mere N750,000 to convicted felon, John Yakubu Yusuf, who stole billions of pension fund.

A statement from the council’s spokesperson, Mr. Soji Oye, read

“The National Judicial Council under the chairmanship of the Honourable Chief Justice of Nigeria, Honourable Justice Aloma Mariam Mukhtar, at its meeting which was held on 24th and 25th April, 2013 suspended Honourable Justice Abubakar Mahmud Talba of the FCT High Court from office for a period of 12 months without pay.

Honourable Justice Talba was suspended from office sequel to the findings by council that he did not exercise his discretion judicially and judiciously with regard to the sentences he passed on one of the accused persons, Mr. John Yakubu Yusuf, in the Police Pension case of FRN Vs Esai Dangabar and 5 Ors.

“It is recalled that the National Judicial Council at its emergency meeting which was held on 20th February, 2013 set up a fact-finding committee to investigate the allegations levelled against Honourable Justice Talba in the Police Pension case of FRN Vs Esai Dangabar and 5 Ors.

“The council however, observed that the charges that had been brought by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) against Mr. John Y. Yusuf in the first charge sheet containing counts 1 to 10 under Section 315 of the Penal Code that provides a maximum jail term of 14 years and fine, were dropped by the EFCC counsel and substituted with another charge sheet with only three counts under Section 309 of the Penal Code that moulds a lesser punishment of two years imprisonment with or without option of fine.

“The National Judicial Council, in the exercise of its disciplinary powers under the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended, also issues serious warning to Honourable Justice Talba to desist from unreasonable exercise of judicial discretion in all matters brought before him.

Culled from Linda Ikeji’s blog.


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