Federal High Court’s judge dies, colleagues suspend sitting in Abuja

Federal High Court’s judge dies, colleagues suspend sitting in Abuja

The Federal High Court (FHC) has lost a judge sitting in its Abeokuta, Ogun State Division, Ibrahim Watila.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that most of the 10 judges in the Abuja division of the court did not sit on Monday following the news of Mr Watila’s passing.

One of the scheduled cases affected by the development on Monday was the trial of a former Minister in the President Goodluck Jonathan-led government, Tanimu Turaki, which is being handled by Inyang Ekwo, the trial judge.

Also affected was the case involving the convener of #RevolutionNow protest and publisher of Sahara Reporters, Omoyele Sowore and his co-defendant, Olawale Bakare, before Ijeoma Ojukwu.

The trial of Faisal Maina, the son of Abdulrasheed Maina, the former Chairperson, defunct Pension Reformed Task Team (PRTT), before Okon Abang, another judge in the Federal High Court in Abuja, was also stalled.

Mr Turaki’s matter was adjourned till January 26, while the cases involving Mr Sowore and Mr Faisal were slated for February 4respectively.

NAN reports that the deceased judge, Mr Watila, had in one of his recent judgments delivered on December 4, 2020, reiterated the importance of legal services.

Delivering the judgment in suit No. FHC/AB/FHR/57/20 between Olumide Babalola and the Attorney General of the Federation, the judge held, “I have no choice but to firmly hold that Article 1(7) of the COVID-19 Regulation is plain and unambiguous as to what are and what not essential services is. Legal service with the context of the Regulation is essential service.”


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