OLUKAYODE ARIWOOLA, newly sown-in Chief Justice of Nigeria’s supreme court, is faced with the same worries as his predecessors at the highest court in the country – political interference. Wednesday, after he was sown-in by President Buhari, Justice Ariwoola sent strong message to Nigerian politicians, to stop mounting pressure on the judicial arm of government in the country.
Nigerian judiciary, over the years, has been riddled by allegations of corruption. A perception that has not abated, despite pledges of reforms in the judiciary by former Chief Justices of Nigeria. The prevalence of allegations of corruption in the judicial system in the country, has been obstacle in the fight against corruption, which the country’s judiciary should be leading.
Speaking with journalists, at the State House, Abuja, after been sworn-in by Buhari, Justice Ariwoola said: “Politicians should allow the judiciary to function. Law is not static, and that’s why you have seen that the National Assembly continues to amend the laws. And it is the laws that the courts apply to the facts available. We shall continue to do justice if only Nigerians will allow us to perform and function without any pressure.”
On the expectations from him as the new CJN, and the supreme court which he now heads, Justice Ariwoola said: “We shall not fail Nigerians. We shall make progress and advance the judiciary of Nigeria to benefit, not only the common man, all men and women.”
The CJN added: “We are computerizing the Supreme Court already, and all other courts of records, so that the delay in filing cases will become a thing of the past. We’re creating E-filing. We are creating E-diary so that lawyers can stay in the comfort of their chambers and contact the court and address the court via Zoom. Computerization is already taking place, not only in the Supreme Court but also the Court of Appeal and other courts of record in Nigeria.”