UN begins investigation into suspension of Chief Justice of Nigeria

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The suspension of the chief justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen by President Muhammadu Buhari has been regarded as a breaking of the international human rights standards on the independence of the judiciary and the separation of powers, a United Nations expert has said.

A UN special rapporteur, Diego Garcia-Sayan said, “International human rights standards provide that judges may be dismissed only on serious grounds of misconduct or incompetence.

“Any decision to suspend or remove a judge from office should be fair and should be taken by an independent authority such as a judicial council or a court,” he said in a statement.

 

 

 

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Garcia-Sayan, who is mandated by the UN Human Rights Council to investigate legal and judicial independence, said dismissing judges without following legal procedures or offering a chance to contest the decision was incompatible with the independence of the judiciary.

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