The Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello has sworn in Justice Henry Adeola Olusiyi, as the state’s Chief Judge and Justice Bayo Olowosegun as the acting President, Customary Court of Appeal and tasked the newly sworn-in justices on professionalism and integrity
The appointment of Olusiyi and Olowosegun as a new chief judge and acting president Customary Court of Appeal followed the demise of the former justices Nasiru Ajana and Shaibu Atadoga respectively who were reported to have died of coronavirus complications.
Bello said that the appointments and subsequent swearing-in of both justices were in line with provisions of sections 271 and subsection 4 and 5 of the 1999 constitution as amended.
Speaking during the swearing-in ceremony in Lokoja on Wednesday, the Governor paid a glowing tribute to justices Nasiru Ajana and Shaibu Atadoga respectively, saying both legal icons set the path for the state’s judiciary.
“It is their passing within one week of each other that has necessitated these proceedings. Justice Ajana was the longest-serving Chief Judge in the history of Kogi State. He served during the tenure of three governors. He was a brilliant mind, distinguished with a massive wealth of experience.
“Atodoga was also on this path, a workaholic judge who sets standards of excellence in the practice of his profession. He inspired reforms and several amendments to the enabling law which greatly expanded the roles of the customary court so it is no wonder that he was that effective as the Kogi State Customary Court of Appeal president.
“In tribute, I’m proud to say the late justices Ajana and Atadoga both teach us that selfless public service is how to become immortal in the eyes of the fellow men. They achieved a legacy that will long be remembered, may the good work of their lordships speak for them till eternity, and may their gentle soul continue to rest in peace,” he said.
Bello, however, charged the newly sworn-in justices to uphold and improve on standards left behind by the departed legal luminaries saying their new offices’ demands integrity and professionalism at all times.
“The state is fortunate to have found worthy successors for the departed bright minds to whom we have entrusted the high offices and responsibility of previous occupants.
“I have no doubt they will provide excellent leadership for our judiciary and the state in general. We, therefore, charged them to execute all the functions of their respective offices with distinction and fear of Almighty God.
“I enjoined the head of Kogi state judiciary and Customary Court of Appeal president of Kogi state, both of whom we have just sworn in to bring their considerable history and experienced jurist to bear in the administration of justice in the state,” he said.
In his remarks, the new Chief Judge, Olusiyi, expressed profound gratitude to the governor and pledged to fill the vacant void left behind by the late chief judge, adding that the judiciary under his watch will be fair, just and based his decision on equity.