By Mfonobong Ukpong
Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly has confirmed the appointment of Justice Godwin Jack Abraham as the substantive Chief of the state, urging the new Chief Judge to decongest prisons in the state through timely dispensation of justice, Speaker of the House, Barrister Onofiok Luke said the state House had played its role in this regard through the passage of the criminal justice and administration law.
Justice Abraham’s ratification follows the adoption of reports of the House Committee on Justice, Judiciary, Human rights and Public petitions during Thursday plenary.
Until his confirmation, the nominee was on acting capacity.
In a report read by the Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Judiciary, Justice, Human Rights and Public petitions, Mr. Otobong Akpan, who stood in for the Chairman, the committee urged the House to clear the nominee, having found him ably qualified to for the position. The committee described Abraham as a person of integrity and that he possess the requisite skills and knowledge to hold the office of the Chief Judge.
The committee observed that the nominee has been qualified to practice as a legal practitioner in Nigeria and has been so qualified for thirty two (32) years, a period well over the required ten years as demanded by the constitution for appointment of Judges. The House equally noted that Justice Abraham was screened and duly recommended by the National Judicial Council for the job.
In his ruling, the Speaker, Barrister Onofiok Luke, while congratulating the nominee, urged him to deploy his wealth of experience to bear in the discharge of his responsibility, especially in ensuring quick dispensation of justice. He was particularly concerned over the need to decongest the prisons, explaining that the legislature has done its own part in passing the administration of Justice law in the state.
He expressed optimism that the Chief Judge will in collaboration with the entire judiciary work assiduously for quick and implementation of the law.
“It is our believe that he will deploy his wealth of experience to bear in the discharge of his responsibility in ensuring access to justice and ensuring quick dispensation of justice in the state”.
What is of concern to us here in Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly is the need to decongest our prisons. And on this note, we have done our part as the House of Assembly in passing the administration of criminal justice law in the state, and we believe that the Chief Judge in collaboration with the entire judiciary will make for quick and absolute implementation of that law”.
“We equally look to a robust working relationship with the Judiciary under Hon. Justice Godwin Jack Abraham as very soon, we will commence our legislative – judiciary parley, where we would have to speak with the judges, magistrates and those who are members of the Judiciary arm of government of this state to see how we can fine-tune our laws for easy implementation.
Having said that, let me say this once again on behalf of members of the House of Assembly, we want to say hearty congratulations to Hon. Godwin Jack Abraham “.
Meanwhile, the House has adjourned plenary to resume on Tuesday, the 20th day of June 2017.