Gross Abuse of Judicial Power: Civil Society Group Calls for Sanction Against Justice Buba, Babalakin

By SaharaReporters, New York

The Civil Society Network Against Corruption has called on the chairman of the National Judicial Council (NJC), to take disciplinary measures against Justice Ibrahim Buba and Mr. Wale Babalakin for their roles in the ongoing drama in Lagos courtrooms in which Babalakin is attempting to evade stealing, fraud and money laundering allegations.  

In a petition signed by its chairman, Olanrewaju Suraju, the group recalled that during her screening by the Senate for her position, the Chief Justice of Nigeria assured the nation that judicial corruption would be seriously tackled in order to restore the image of the Judiciary of Nigeria which has been dented by some Judges and senior lawyers.

Reviewing the Babalakin drama, the group expressed surprise that in the same Federal High Court which threw out Babalakin's suit and in the same case, Justice Buba has turned himself into an appeal court.

“In view of the order of perpetual injunction granted by him restraining the EFCC from ever arresting, detaining or prosecuting Dr. Peter Odili, the former Governor of River State, we hereby request the National Judicial Council to stop Justice Ibrahim Buba from further discreting the Nigerian Judiciary by restraining the EFCC once again from prosecuting Dr. Wale Babalakin, who has sworn never to stand trial before the Lagos High Court.”

The group said it had confirmed an orchestrated plan by Babalakin, who is a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), to set the Federal High Court against the Lagos High Court and in the process, expose the Judiciary to ridicule before the Nigerian people and the international community.

It recalled that instead of facing his trial at the Lagos State High Court for the charges being preferred against him, the lawyer and businessman sent a medical report to the court claiming that he was sick, leading to the case being adjourned on that basis.

“While the proceedings in the Lagos High Court were going on, Dr. Wake Babalakin got another team of lawyers to pray the Federal High Court to stop the Lagos State High Court from prosecuting him.”

As a result, the anti-corruption advocates said, Mr. Ebun Sofunde, another SAN who had appeared for Babalakin at the Lagos High Court was very embarrassed and he had to withdraw from the case.

The group further recalled that the presiding Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Idris then refused the application and dismissed the case, at which point Babalakin decided to file another suit at the same Federal High Court, before Justice Ibrahim Buba.

“From the information available to us, Justice Ibrahim Buba who has a record of frustrating corruption cases, has concluded arrangement to stop the EFCC from prosecuting Dr. Wale Babalakin in any Court of law in Nigeria. When the case came before him on Tuesday, 18th December, 2012, he granted accelerated hearing and ordered the EFCC to appear on Friday, December 21st, 2012 to justify why Babalakin's prayers should not be granted.”

Urging the NJC to investigate the circumstances surrounding the case and to impose appropriate sanction against Justice Ibrahim Buba, the group also called for Babalakin to be referred to the Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee for appropriate disciplinary measures for conducts unbecoming of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.

GROSS ABUSE OF JUDICIAL POWERS BY IBRAHIM BUBA AND DR. WALE BABALAKIN
During your Ladyship's screening by the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, you did assure the Nation that Judicial corruption would be seriously tackled, in order to restore the image of the Judiciary of Nigeria which has been dented by some Judges and senior lawyers.

Our Network has confirmed an orchestrated plan by Dr. Wale Babalakin SAN to set the Federal High Court against the Lagos High Court and in the process, expose the Judiciary to ridicule before the Nigerian people and the international community. As Your Ladyship may be aware, Dr. Wale Babalakin has been charged before the Lagos State High Court, for stealing, fraud and Money laundering. Instead of facing his trial, he sent a medical report to the Lagos High Court claiming that he was sick and the case was adjourned on that basis. While the proceedings in the Lagos High Court were going on, Dr. Wake Babalakin got another team of lawyers to pray the Federal High Court to stop the Lagos State High Court from prosecuting him.

Mr. Ebun Sofunde (SAN), the lawyer who appeared for Dr. Babalakin at the Lagos High Court was very embarrassed and he had to withdraw from the case. The Presiding Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Idris refused the application and dismissed the case. When Justice Idris refused to be compromised, Dr. Wake Babalakin decided to file another suit at the same Federal High Court, before Justice Ibrahim Buba.

From the information available to us, Justice Ibrahim Buba who has a record of frustrating corruption cases, has concluded arrangement to stop the EFCC from prosecuting Dr. Wale Babalakin in any Court of law in Nigeria. When the case came before him on Tuesday, 18th December, 2012, he granted accelerated hearing and ordered the EFCC to appear on Friday, December 21st, 2012 to justify why Babalakin's prayers should not be granted.
Since the same Federal High Court presided over by Justice Idris has thrown out Dr. Babalakin's suit, our network is surprised that Justice Ibrahim Buba has turned himself into an appeal court over the same case. In view of the order of perpetual injunction granted by him restraining the EFCC from ever arresting, detaining or prosecuting Dr. Peter Odili, the former Governor of River State, we hereby request the National Judicial Council to stop Justice Ibrahim Buba from further discreting the Nigerian Judiciary by restraining the EFCC once again from prosecuting Dr. Wale Babalakin, who has sworn never to stand trial before the Lagos High Court.

Finally, we urge the NJC to investigate the circumstances surrounding of this case by Justice Ibrahim Buba and impose appropriate sanction against him. Also, Dr. Babalakin should be referred to the Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee for appropriate disciplinary measures for conducts unbecoming of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.

Olanrewaju Suraju
Chair,
Civil Society Network Against Corruption.
 

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@'SR, CIVIL SOCIETY GROUPS? DON'T' BY ANONYMOUS

There is no more to be said. I agree with you one hundred per cent. Some journalists think that the best way for them to gain popularity is to dabble into sensationalism particularly if the subject matter concerns the judiciary. No matter which way the ruling or judgement goes the judge is accused of having compromised the judicial integrity. A judge is not expected to descend into the arena of conflict otherwise he makes himself a party. Judges are like still water they are stirred by the argument of counsel. Any lawyer who does not do his case well should not expect assistance from the bench even if the evidence is within the knowledge of the judge. Many of the cases lost by EFCC may actually be caused by the quality of presentation made by their lawyers. Noise making is not the same thing as good advocacy.

SR,Civil Society groups? dont

SR,Civil Society groups? dont be ridiculous!!!. What role has Justice Buba played in the drama. The matter was heard at 9am this morning for the first time before him, your piece came out before he his ruling. Did he transfer the case file to himself. In the face of anything, we should not in the name of pre-empting the judicial officer say things that are capable of the wrath of God. Who are the civil society people, some paid guys I guess. Who are they representing? The questions we should be asking is whether the EFCC has employed the right hands to do the job their legal team is doing. If you place enough evidence before a court of law and you dont get judgment in your favour, you have a right of appeal to two different places. We should know better than all the media trials that the EFCC lawyers always do. Am sure Nigerians know better

EFCC V. BABALAKIN

A big shame. A Senior Advocate of Nigeria trying to deploy subterfuge to escape justice. The son of a retired Justice of the Supreme Court. What hope for the common man?

Please note Justice Buba

Please note Justice Buba don't assign cases to himself .

Is Nigeria system

from the least to the top, everyone in Nigeria abuses power.

buba needs to pay the suprem price

just imagine whom they call a judge? do we actually need that kind of human being there at the bench?
Just too too bad.

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Contempt of Court!

This is brazen Contempt of Court!

These legal maneuvers are

These legal maneuvers are wrong aqt every level and should be sanctioned. This is law 101 forum shopping and worse still judge shopping. It is so shameful I refuse to finish reading the article. Where are the klawyers in Nigeria, please put some legal decency (ethics) to bear to help th country set precedents and standards of legal behavior. It is appalling and reveals the value or lack thereof of the SAN designation.

Hollow daft petition. Empty.

Hollow daft petition. Empty. Devoid of any fact except some sentimental rubbish

WHEN A JUDICIARY PITCHES CAMP AGAINST THE PEOPLE.....

The Judiciary in most functioning democracies is the last hope of the citizen,it is the protector of the laws upon which modern democratic societies are built.The executive and legislative arms of government all depend on the Judiciary as the final arbiter when interpreting the laws of the land,the general interest of the entire citizenry therefore hinges on a firm,upright and incorruptible justice system.
A rogue Judge will not only circumvent justice through obnoxious verdicts but also destroy the whole foundation of a country's democracy,this also constitutes an imminent threat to the national security of such a nation,especially when common criminals like embezzlers of public funds can manipulate the judiciary by shopping for dubious verdicts in the law courts of the land.
Babalakin must be stopped in his tracks,he has made enough fun of the Nigerian justice delivery system.

Babalakin should proof Innocence in Court

Babalakin should please go to court to defend himself of the indictments brought against him by EFCC. Evading justice would not help him. If he thinks he can use his stolen wealth to buy all Nigerians, he is kidding. The Doctors in LUTH and the Judge colluding with Babalakin should wash their dirty hands off this case. Babalakin is presumed innocent until it is proved otherwise, let him therefore go to court and proof his innocence

IS THIS THE BEGINNING OF THE END?

Every regime that toys with the judiciary also toys with its existence. I hope this is not the much needed preparation for termination.

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