Investigation carried out by the National Judicial Council, NJC, has found ex-Chief Judge of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Justice Hassan Gunmi, guilty of judicial corruption.
According to a statement issued by the acting director of Information of NJC, Soji Oye, at the end of a two-day crucial meeting in Abuja on Thursday, the council said it had been proven that the former Chief Judge perverted the course of justice in a case involving a company, Nestello Gateway Group and the governor of Zamfara State, Abubakar Yari.
The NJC described the conduct of Justice Gunmi in the case as “most unethical and highly reprehensible,” but said it had decided not to take punitive measures against him considering that he had voluntarily bowed out of office.
Gunmi voluntarily resigned from the bench in May, barely three weeks after the council concluded plans to investigate the case against him and has since been crowned Emir of Gunmi town inZamfara State, to replace Aliyu Abara who died on May 7.
The council, however, warned that “henceforth, any similar misconduct by any judicial officer will be visited with severe sanctions.
It also issued a stern warning to Justice M.A. Onyetenu of the Federal High Court for granting ex-parte order without hearing the pending motion and applications in a suit between one CharityAkah, an evangelist and Alpaca Price Nigeria Limited.
The council said it had adjourned hearing on petitions against other judicial officials across the country accused of involvement in acts of corruption till its next sitting.
Part of the statement reads:
“The committee investigated the petition forwarded to it byNestello Gateway Group in Suit No. FCT/HC/CV/486/10 against Justice Hassan Gummi, former Chief Judge of High Court of FCT,Abuja.
“At the end of deliberation, council accepted the findings of its committee that Justice Gummi, interfered with the execution of the judgment delivered by Justice Jude Okeke of the FCT High Court,Abuja, in the suit between Nestello Gateway Group and AlhajiAbubakar Yari, a former National Assembly member and current Governor of Zamfara State, in which execution had already been levied in favour of the petitioner.
“Council found the interference by Justice Gummi in the execution of the judgment as most unethical and highly reprehensible.”