Except for a last minute change of mind by President Muhammadu Buhari, the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) Walter Onnoghen may be eased out of the system by February 10, 2017.
In his place, the National Judicial Commission (NJC) may have to send the name of Hon. Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad to the president for approval as the next CJN.
Muhammad is the next in line to Onnoghen in the hierarchy of Supreme Court justices
Onnoghen who was appointed as acting CJN on January 10, 2017 has until February 10, 2017 to remain in office, and by law, his tenure is not renewable, if he is not confirmed by the Senate.
The president, who is on vacation, is due to resume duties on Monday, February 6, and it is still uncertain if he will forward Onnoghen’s name to the Senate for screening, or subsequent confirmation as substantive CJN.
If he fails to do this, Justice Muhammad may be on his way to becoming the new CJN.
Born December 31, 1953 at Doguwa – Giade, Giade LGA of Bauchi State, he attended Government Secondary School, Azare in 1973, and proceeded to the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria for his Bachelor of Law degree (1980).
He later got his LL.M (1984) and Ph.D in Law (1998) from the same University.
Hon. Justice Muhammad was appointed a Justice of the Supreme Court (JSC) in 2006 and sworn in on January 7, 2007.
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