The Court of Appeal has dismissed an appeal filed against the decision of the Calabar Judicial Division of the Federal High Court refusing to enforce the fundamental rights of Honourable Justice Akon Ikpeme when the Cross River State House of Assembly refused to confirm her as Chief Judge of the State on discriminatory ground that she poses a security risk, not being an indigene of the State.
The Appeal Court ruled that there was no credible evidence to establish that Hon. Justice Akon Ikpeme was discriminated against warranting her non-confirmation.
TheNigeriaLawyer recalls that the Appellants had attached two Exhibits to their Affidavit before the trial Court, Exhibit 1 was a report recommending the confirmation of Justice Ikpeme as Chief Judge of Cross River State while Exhibit 2 opposed her confirmation, which same were not challenged.
However, the Appeal Court affirming the decision of the Federal High Court, said no credible evidence was placed before it to warrant the reliefs being sought.
TheNigeriaLawyer recalls that the trial Court was beseeched for the following reliefs, which were dismissed:
“1. A DECLARATION that Hon. Justice Akon Ikpeme is a citizen of Nigeria and entitled to be appointed to any office in Cross River State by virtue of her citizenship and is guaranteed the right to freedom from discrimination by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).
“2. A DECLARATION that the Non-Confirmation of Hon Justice Akon Ikpeme as the substantive Chief Judge of Cross River State by the Cross River State House of Assembly solely on the basis that she is not from Cross River State is unlawful, unconscionable, discriminatory and amounts to a gross violation of her constitutionally Fundamental Human Rights to freedom from discrimination.
“3. A DECLARATION that the non-confirmation of Hon. Justice Akon Ikpeme as the substantive Chief Judge of Cross River State by the Cross River State House of Assembly on the basis that she is not from Cross River State and therefore a security risk is a violent contravention of her Fundamental Human Rights to freedom from discrimination.
“4. AN ORDER setting aside the decision of the Cross River State House of Assembly made on the 2nd of March, 2020 as to the Non confirmation of Hon. Justice Akon Ikpeme for being a nullity as same is in gross violation of her fundamental right to freedom from discrimination.
“5. EXEMPLARY AND SPECIAL DAMAGES in the sum of N50,000,000.00 (Fifty Million Naira only) against the Respondents jointly and severally for the untold hardship and public ridicule/humiliation suffered by Hon. Justice Akon Ikpeme as a result of the violation of her right to freedom from discrimination.
“6. AND for such further or other Order(s) as this Honourable Court may deem fit to make in the circumstances of this application.”
You want to share a story with us? You want to advertise? You need publicity for a product, service, or event? Contact us on WhatsApp – +234 803 3018 881