On Tuesday the Senate confirmed the appointment of Justice John Tsoho as the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court of Nigeria.
The confirmation followed a report filed by Sen. Michael Bamidele, Chairman, Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters which recommended the confirmation of Tsoho’s appointment.
Presenting the report, Bamidele said that the appointment became necessary as a result of the retirement of Justice Adamu Abdul Kafarati after attaining the retirement age of 65 years as provided by Section 291(2) of the Constitution.
He said “In compliance with this requirement the erstwhile Chief Judge, retired on July 25, thus making the position of the Chief Judge of the Court, vacant.”
He said, “For the avoidance of doubt, the appointment of Justice Tsoho was made pursuant to Section 250 of the 1999 Constitution.
” It provides that the appointment of a person to the office of the chief judge of the federal high court shall be made by the president on the recommendation of the National Industrial Council subject to confirmation of such appointment by the Senate.”
He further said that it was on the strength of this provision that the appointment of the nominee –Tsoho — was forwarded to the Senate.
“Tsoho is the most senior judge on the bench of the federal high court. He was recommended in order of seniority and preference by the Federal Judicial Service Commission to the National Judicial Council for appointment as Chief Judge of the Federal High Court,” he said.
A member of the committee, Sen. Gabriel Suswam (PDP-Benue) who gave credence to the report said that Tsoho was a man of unimpeachable integrity.
In a related development, the Senate also confirmed Justice Benedict Kanyip as President of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria.
The appointment of Kanyip became necessary as a result of the retirement of Justice Babatunde Adejumo after attaining the mandatory retirement age of 65 years as provided by Section 291(2) of the 1999 Constitution.
President of the Senate Ahmad Lawan said that the judiciary in Nigeria was supposed to be a very active one and as such, should be given the necessary support to discharge their functions.
He called for more funding for the judiciary to ensure the effectiveness of the sector.