Anti-corruption: CJN limits number of lawyers in court

2435, Chief Justice of Nigeria Walter Onnoghen

The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) Walter Onnoghen, has announced restrictions on the number of lawyers that could appear for a party in a case before the court.
Justice Onnoghen pegged the number to five.

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This put a stop to the practice by political exposed persons facing corruption prosecution, who are fond of storming the court with high number of lawyers.
The development was one of others contained in the CJN’s speech in Abuja on Monday at an event organised to mark the commencement of the Supreme Court’s 2017/2018 new legal year and the swearing-in of 29 lawyers, who were conferred with the Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN).

He said, “In order for the NJC to monitor and effectively enforce the foregoing policy, an Anti-Corruption Cases Trial Monitoring Committee will be constituted at the next council meeting.

“This committee would be saddled with, among other things, the responsibility of ensuring that both trial and appellate courts handling corruption and financial crime cases key into and abide by our renewed efforts at ridding our country of the cankerworm.

“Of course, we are also aware that the judiciary cannot win this war alone; hence the need for collaboration and interface with stakeholders in this noble cause.

“We are under no illusion that the fight against corruption would be an easy one, as we are already aware that when you fight corruption, corruption fights back; but we are determined to win it. We require all hands to be on deck to fight this monster.

“We in the Supreme Court, having reduced the pre-election appeals in the course of the third term of the last legal year, will devote much of this first term in dealing, by way of task work, with the identified 18 EFCC, ICPC, and economic crime cases alongside the normal civil, criminal and political cases.”

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