The Court of Appeal has denied claims that the transfer of its 21 Justices to various divisions in the country has to do with its judgement which quashed the terrorism charges against Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
The Appellate Court said on Tuesday that contrary to insinuations, the posting of 21 out of its 81 Justices was a routine exercise aimed at reinvigorating the justice delivery of the Court.
In a statement, the Chief Registrar of the Court, Malam Umar Mohammed Bangari, denied the media report that the three Justices who delivered the October 13 judgement that ordered the release of Kanu from detention were transferred.
According to him, only one Justice out of the three that handled Kanu’s case was affected by the postings.
The statement read in part, “The attention of the Court of Appeal has been drawn to a publication in the media on Monday, October 24, 2022 with the caption ‘Nnamdi Kanu: 3 Justices on Appeal Court Panel Transferred’.
“The publication in question conveyed the innuendo to the effect that the recent postings of Justices of the Court of Appeal were in connection with or in response to the judgement of the Court of 13th October 2022 in Nnamdi Kanu Versus the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“We wish to state categorically that the general postings of the Justices of the Court of Appeal under reference were routine and aimed at reinvigorating the justice delivery system of the Court.
“In fact, 21 out of 81 Justices including 6 Presiding Justices of the Court were affected by the general postings.
“It is therefore incorrect to insinuate that the Honourable Justices who delivered the judgement in the Nnamdi Kanu appeal were the targets of the routine posting exercise.
“A few minutes of inquiry by the media could have clarified the fact.
“We appeal to the media to exercise restraint and circumspection in reporting matters pertaining to the Court and its operations.
“The Court of Appeal has an open door policy of providing easy access to the media to make inquiries and seek clarification on any matters of interest to the media for the benefit of the general public.”