By Anthony Ogbonna
Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo has nominated Walter Onnoghen as the substantive Chief Justice of Nigeria.
This is coming a day the Acting President said Mr. Onnoghen’s name could still be forwarded before the February 10 deadline stipulated by the Constitution.
Osinbajo made the nomination known via the twitter handle of President Muhammadu Buhari, @NGRPresident on Wednesday.
Recall that much concern was raised some days back following the delay by the Presidency to send the name of Mr. Onnoghen to the Senate for confirmation.
According to the tweet, “Hon. Justice W.S. Onnoghen’s name has been sent to the Senate for confirmation as the next CJN.”
Justice Onnoghen now stands to be confirmed by the Senate in order to assume full duty as the Chief Justice of the Federation.
However, the senate is currently on recess till February 21, although an emergency sitting could be held to confirm him.
The confirmation of Onnoghen would make Nigeria have the first southern head of the apex court since 30 years.
But the initial delay by the presidency in sending his name to the Senate for confirmation raised allegations of ethnic bias.
Hon. Justice W.S. Nkanu Onnoghen was born on the 22nd December, 1950 at Okurike Town, Biase L.G.A. of Cross Rivers State.
He attended the Presbyterian Primary School, Okurike Town between 1959 and 1965.
He later proceeded to Accra, Ghana to attend Odorgorno Secondary School, Adabraka, Accra, Ghana between 1967 and 1972 for his West African Examination Council (WAEC) Exams.
He was at Accra Academy, Accra Ghana between 1972 and 1974 for his WAEC (A-Levels) before proceeding to the University of Ghana, Legon, Ghana between 1974 and 1977 to obtain his Bachelor of Law Degree (LL.B (Hons)) and graduated with 2nd Class Upper Division.
He attended the Nigerian Law School, Victoria Island, Lagos between 1977 and 1978 for his B.L certificate.
Her previous professional appointments/positions held include:
Pupil State Counsel, Ministry of Justice, Ikeja, Lagos, Ogun State (1978 – 1979)
Partner in the Law Firm of Effiom Ekong & Company, Calabar (1979 – 1988)
Principal Partner/Head of Chamber of Walter Onneghen & Associates, Calabar (1988 -1989)
High Court Judge, Cross Rivers State Judiciary (1989 – 1998)
Chairman, Cross Rivers State Armed Robbery and Fire Arms Tribunal (1990 – 1993)
Chairman, Judicial Enquiry into the Crisis between Student of the University of Calabar and Obufa Esuk Orok Community, Calabar (1996)
Chairman, Failed Bank Tribunal, Ibadan Zone (1998)
Judge, High Court of Rivers State (1992 – 2004)
Justice of the Court of Appeal (1998 – 2005)
A Fellow, Chaterred Institute of Arbitrators, Hon. Justice W.S. Nkanu Onnoghen has attended several conferences and seminars around the world. He is a member of the Body of Bencher and Life Bencher.
Hon. Justice W.S. Nkanu Onnoghen was appointed a Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria (JSC) since 2005.
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