Odili Invasion: Judicial officers will start resisting embarrassment, harassment henceforth says CJN

Chief Justice of Nigeria, Ibrahim Tanko Mohammed, has warned against further embarrassment and harassment of judicial officers across the country.

Mr Mohammed gave the warning on Wednesday while speaking at an event to mark the 2021/2022 legal year of the supreme court in Abuja.

The top jurist also spoke on the invasion of Justice Mary Odili’s residence in October, warning that such harassment will no longer be tolerated by the judicial arm of government.

“On a very sad note, I must say, we were jolted with embarrassing news of the invasion of the official residence of honourable justice Mary Peter Odili on Friday, October 29, by men suspected to be security operatives, acting on a search warrant,” the CJN said. “The said warrant was purportedly obtained from an Abuja magistrate court under questionable circumstances.

“I must make it known to all and sundry that we have had enough dosage of such embarrassment and harassment of our judicial officers across the country and we can no longer take any of such shenanigans.

“By the nature of our work, we are a conservative but not conquered species and should not be pushed further than this by any individual, institution or agency of the government.

“With time, those taking the judiciary as a mere weakling will soon realise that it is from the calmest seas we often experience the fiercest storms.

“The time to oppress, suppress and intimidate judicial officers is gone. We shall begin to resist any clandestine attempt to silence or ridicule us to oblivion.

“Nigeria, to the best of my knowledge, is not a lawless society. We should begin to do things that will project us favourably and rightly too, to the international community.

“No law permits anyone to invade, subdue or overawe any Nigerian citizen in his or her residence with a flimsy, fraudulently-obtained search warrant.

“We are making efforts now to ensure that henceforth, every search or arrest warrant must be issued with the knowledge and approval of the chief judge of the respective state or federal high court as the case may be.”