The National Judicial Council (NJC) said on Wednesday that no security agency has found Justice Uwani Abba-Aji guilty of accepting bribe, thus affirming his nomination to the Supreme Court bench.
This is as the Council re-affirmed its commitment to zero tolerance for corruption.
The Director of Information of the NJC, Soji Oye, stated this, while reacting to a publication by the Civic Society Network Against Corruption, urging President Muhammadu Buhari not to forward the name of Justice Uwani Abba-Aji recommended to him by the Council for appointment as a Justice of the Supreme Court to the Senate for confirmation.
The group had vowed to challenge the action in Court if Abba-Aji’s name was forwarded and confirmed as Supreme Court Judge.
The group premised its objection to the appointment of Justice Abba-Aji to the Apex Court on the report of an online newspaper of October 16, 2016, which featured his name as one of the Judicial Officers under investigation for corruption by Security Agencies for accepting bribe from a Senior Lawyer who is currently facing trial at the Law Court.
Oye said the Civil Society group urged President Buhari to withhold submission of Justice Abba- Aji’s name to the National Assembly until he is purged of the allegation of corruption.
The statement said: “In as much as the National Judicial Council would not join issues with anyone on this matter, it is necessary to put the records straight.
“Members of the public would recall that sequel to the request of the Attorney-General of the Federation, in 2016, Justice Abba-Aji and seven other Judicial Officers were directed by the Council to recuse themselves from performing their judicial functions pending their investigation by Security Agency.
“However, Justice Abba-Aji and five others were recalled as only three out of the Judicial Officers then under investigations were arraigned in Court.
“For the avoidance of doubt, Justice Abba-Aji has since been sitting in Court and no Investigation Agency has filed any new allegation against His Lordship, in fact, his international passport had been returned to him and he had been travelling outside the country without any hindrance, signalling that the investigation agencies have nothing new against His Lordship.
“The law of the land remains that no one is to be punished except for an offence established by due process of law”, the NJC spokesman said in the statement.