According to the letter, Dim-Udebuani said: “the Chief Judge of the FCT has been in breach of the said legislation, which was meant to run with the spirit of the federal character, as enshrined in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Dim-Udebuani, in the suit currently the Federal High Court further seeks an order, stopping the ongoing appointment process of judicial officers to fill up the vacancies in the FCT High Court, an order setting aside the provisional of final shortlisted candidates. He also wants an order compelling the defendants to correct the anomalies by shortlisting candidates from the states that have none or one rather than appointing from states that already has two or more.
“An order of the court directing the Chief Registrar of the High Court of the FCT to post on the website of the court the correct and authentic profile of all the judges in the FCT. An order stopping the president (first defendant) from acting on any recommendation of the NJC as regards to appointment of judges in the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, pending the rectification of the anomalies” Udebuani said.
The counsel to the plaintiff also insisted that the nomination or appointment of new judicial officers to fill in the vacancies must be made in those states that have none and that it would amount to a mockery of the nation’s constitution as it regards to the federal character principle to appoint from those states that already have judges because the elevated judges were either elevated or retired from those states.
Meanwhile, a date is yet to be fixed for the hearing of the suit.
It would be recalled that on March 17, 2014, President Goodluck Jonathan approved the appointment of 25 justices for the Court of Appeal, which brought the total number of justices to 90.
According to the Acting Director of Information of the National Judicial Council (NJC), Mr. Soji Oye, the appointment was in line with the recommendation of the NJC, chaired by Justice Aloma Mariam Mukhtar, who stated that “the appointment is in line with the new Court of Appeal (Amendment) Act which increased the number of Justices of the Court from Seventy (70) to Ninety (90) and the vacancies which were occasioned by the demise, retirement and elevation of some Justices of the Court to the Supreme Court.”