Justice Reform Project Files Appeal Against Federal High Court Decision, Continues Its Challenge Of Judges’ Appointment
On 24 November, 2020, the Justice Reform Project (JRP) filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja against the decision of the Federal High Court delivered on the 30th September 2020.
Prequel to this development, the Justice Reform Project (JRP) had in June 2020, in Suit No: FHC/ABJ/CS/602/2020: JRP FOUNDATION LTD/GTE V THE PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA & 24 ORS, challenged the National Judicial Council’s nomination of twenty-one (21) persons for appointment as Judges of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory. JRP contended that these persons failed to meet the mandatory requirements under the NJC Procedural Rules as a basis for its challenge and sought orders restraining the President from appointing the said individuals.
On 30th September 2020, the Federal High Court, per Justice E.O Abang, without considering the merits of the case, dismissed the action upholding objections filed by the 25 Defendants. The Court held that JRP lacked the legal right to challenge the NJC’s actions and that the National Industrial Court and not the Federal High Court was the proper court to approach as it was an employment-related case. The Court also declined to consider hearing the matter virtually.
JRP has now appealed this decision and seeks to establish its legal right to maintain the action and its entitlement to the reliefs sought etc. The link to the Notice of Appeal filed is exhibited below.