End SARS: Confusion as judges, staff, litigants, vacate High Court after orders from above

October 21, 2020
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There was pandemonium, on Wednesday, as judges, staff and litigants were told to vacate the Federal High Court (FHC), Abuja, amid the ongoing End SARS protests across Nigeria.

The instruction, which circulated like wildfire at about 1:20 pm, caused the judges, staff and other people in the high-rise building to abruptly end their official duties as they filed out of the skyscraper.

NAN reports that efforts to get information from staff on why they were leaving their offices were unsuccessful.

“We are asked to leave the office now, but I do not know the reason,” one of the workers, who didn’t want her name mentioned, said.

However, Memunat Folami, the Deputy Chief Registrar, Admin of the FHC, said that there was an instruction from John Tsoho, the Special Assistant to the Chief Judge, that staff should close for today’s work.

She also said that the instruction came from the National Judicial Council (NJC) down to the chief judge that all staff should close for the day.

Folami said, “You know the head of the court cannot pass an instruction, and we’ll not carry it out. Even the Ministry of Justice staff didn’t come to work today.”

Earlier in the day, there were sittings at a number of courts.
For instance, Justices Okon Abang, Ijeoma Ojukwu, and Inyang Ekwo were among the judges that sat on Wednesday.

Catherine-Oby Nwandu, the FHC’s acting Information Officer, could not be reached at the time of filing the story.

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