The senate has just confirmed Justice Walter Onnoghen the new Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN. Justice Onnoghen’s confirmation came during today’s plenary.
This is after thorough consideration of the letter sent to the National Assembly by Acting-President Yemi Osinbajo requesting his confirmation as substantive Chief Justice of Nigeria.
The hearing began at about midday and ran for around one hour with Onnoghen introducing himself and fielding questions from the lawmakers on how he aims to improve on the activities of the Nigerian judiciary which he has been nominated by the president to head.
After answering series of questions put before him by the Senators, Onnoghen took a bow and left the red chamber. Senate President, Bukola Saraki, then put the question for his approval before the Senate, who unanimously agreed to his confirmation.
Saraki directed that copies of the resolution be sent to the government, for immediate action.
Justice Walter Onnoghen, who would be retiring from active service in 2021, has been leading the country’s judiciary in an acting capacity since November 10 when he was so appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari, following the retirement of Mahmud Mohammed.
The 67-year-old Justice was born in Kruiku Town, Biase Local Government Area of Cross River State. He bagged his Law degree from the University of Ghana, Legon, in 1977 before his BL certificate at the Nigerian Law School in 1978.
He started his career as a Pupil State Counsel in the Lagos State Ministry of Justice, in 1979, after which he ventured into private practice.
In 1989, he returned to public service as a judge in the High Court of his native Cross River State. Justice Walter Onnoghen joined the federal judicial service in 1998 as Justice of the Court Appeal, a position he held until 2005 when he was elevated to the Supreme Court.
The Senate is yet to make public its decision on the screening of Ibrahim Magu for confirmation as the substantive chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
Mr. Magu’s earlier nomination was rejected last December by the Senate, which cited allegations integrity deficiency made by the State State Security.