THE Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has asked for a reform of the Nigerian constitution in order to reduce the amount of cases that end up before the Supreme Court.
The body also requested the immediate appointment of more Justices to bring the Supreme Court’s total number of Justices up to 21, as required by Section 230(1)(B) of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Constitution.
Justice Amina Augie recently retired, reducing the Supreme Court’s total number of justices to 11.
In a statement released yesterday by the NBA’s national press secretary, Akorede Lawal, the association’s president, Yakubu Maikyau, SAN, stated that the retirement of Justice Augie has increased the workload on the justices.
Maikyau also requested that the Constitution be amended to limit the amount of cases heard by the Supreme Court.
The statement partly read, “The NBA President expressed concerns that the exit of Hon. Justice Augie from the Bench of the Supreme Court has further reduced the number of Justices of this Court, with the attendant increase in the workload of the already overworked/overburdened and, unfortunately, poorly remunerated justices.
“The NBA President noted that it has become imperative that the Nigerian Constitution be amended to increase the threshold for the number of justices to be appointed to the Supreme Court and to reduce the number of matters that get to the Supreme Court by limiting the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to certain constitutional matters.”
The NBA president further stated that the association was in talks with the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission and the National Judicial Council about judicial officer remuneration.
“The NBA President stated that President Bola Tinubu has directed a presidential working group to harmonise the recommendations from RMAFC, NBA, and NJC, with the view to include the outcome in the 2024 budget appropriation, ” the statement added.