Nigeria: N23b Pension Scam: The Judiciary Agian Betrays The Nation
Justice Abubakar Talba, just recently handed Mr. John Yusuf only a two-year jail sentence for conniving with others to defraud the office and pensioners of N27.2bn. The Judge gave him an option of fine in the sum of N750,000 for the three offences he pleaded guilty. The Judge seem to have allowed Mr. John Yusuf to go home with the almost
N26billion of pensioners money. The recent Oil Subsidy windfall of over N2.Trillion is yet to die down. Just as the World Economic Forum was meeting last week, a former Minister in Obasanjo’s government stated that US$67 billion was left in the kitty in 2007.
These have shocked not a few Nigerian. However, nothing can be done, even if these allegations are founded to be true. The Courts may deliver similar rulings. Ibori’s case is just a recent history.
The courts should be temples of justice, but in Nigeria, this is being irretrievably destroyed by corruption, to the concern of many. The slow pace of the fight against corruption in Nigeria has been blamed on both the Bench and the Bar. Many Nigerians took swipe at the legal practice vis-à-vis the fight against graft with the verdict of courts have not lived up to the societal expectations.
The judiciary must play a critical role in the fight to rid Nigeria of corruption. The new CJN, been a mother must design policies of purging the judiciary of corrupt practices. Corruption now almost passes for state policy and is responsible in large measure of dashed hopes and dreams of Nigeria. The courts, as “Temple of Justice” is the final arbiter in our criminal Justice system. And as such, the CJN must purge the Judiciary and cleanse itself of all forms of corruption and discharge its duties without fear or favour.
The nation’s judiciary should take a cue from the Japan, where, there is no delay in their court system. The frequent unnecessary adjournment of cases, have also encouraged our lawyers to be lazy. The notion that “Lawyers don’t lose cases, but their clients”, should help to save their system and their integrity.
The Judiciary should help the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Nigeria Police and other law enforcement agencies in the fight to rid the country of Corruption.