Court of Appeal Rules: CCT Breached Onnoghen’s Right to Fair Hearing

Justice Onnoghen
Justice Onnoghen

Today the Court of Appeal delivered judgement in the appeals filed by Justice Walter Onnoghen.  Justice Onnoghen is the suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria. President Muhammadu Buhari suspended the former Chief Justice of Nigeria on January 25, 2019.

The court of appeal sitting in Abuja has ruled today that the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) breached Walter Onnoghen’s right to a fair hearing when it ordered his suspension pending the determination of his trial before the tribunal. But in appeal court ruling on Friday, a three-man bench led by Stephen Adah, held that the CCT’s ex parte order breached the ex-CJN’s right to a fair hearing.

Daladi Umar, chairman of the tribunal, had ordered Onnoghen to step aside pending the ruling of the CCT.

Walter Onnoghen was convicted by the Code of Conduct Tribunal on Thursday, April 18, 2019, for false assets declaration. He was unable to account for over 5 accounts he did not declare.

He was tried and convicted for false asset charges. The various appeal filed is about his trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal.

The appeal filed by Onnoghen includes an appeal against the bias decision of the chairman of the tribunal. He is also challenging the order of the tribunal which instructed the president to suspend him from office.