The code of behavior(Conduct) tribunal these days issued a warrant of arrest for justice walter onnoghen, the estranged leader justice of the federation. this has raised plenty of questions as to the location of the tribunal inside the judicial hierarchy.
In each society, the courts play a pivotal position inside the organisation and protection of regulation and order. the courts in nigeria are creations of the charter which in turn lays down their jurisdictional limits.
Inside the same vein, a few bodies are created via the charter with the equal goal of maintaining regulation and order. one in all such bodies is the code of behavior tribunal.
Code of conduct tribunalon the 14th of january 2019, nigerians awoke to the information that the chief justice of nigeria, his lordship justice onnoghen become to be arraigned earlier than the code of behavior tribunal on the allegation that he failed to declare his assets.
As a result of the above, president suspended the chief justice of nigeria based totally on an ex-parte order of the code of behavior tribunal that the chief justice be suspended.
This text could try and provide an explanation for the location of the code of conduct tribunal in the judicial hierarchy.
THE CODE OF CONDUCT TRIBUNAL
The code of conduct tribunal is installed via the charter of the federal republic of nigeria 1999.
The tribunal is empowered to strive public officers for breach of the provisions of the code of conduct bureau and tribunal act.
The tribunal is in addition empowered to impose any of the following punishments;
Excursion of office or seat in any legislative residence, because the case may be;
disqualification from membership of a legislative residence and from the retaining of any public office for a length no longer exceeding ten years; and
seizure and forfeiture to the country of any property received in abuse or corruption of office.
appeals from the decision of the tribunal lie as of right to the court of appeal. the selection of the tribunal does not exclude the accused individual from being prosecuted on a crook fee earlier than a ready courtroom of law.
Appeals from the decision of the tribunal lie as of proper to the court docket of attraction. the choice of the tribunal does not avert the accused character from being prosecuted on a crook rate before a ready court.
JUDICIAL POWERS AND THE CODE OF CONDUCT TRIBUNA
on whether or now not the code of conduct tribunal is empowered to exercising judicial powers, reference is made to the charter which positioned the duty of adjudicating matters in the fingers of the judiciary; headed and supervised with the aid of the chief justice of nigeria.
phase 6 (five) of the charter vests judicial powers on the subsequent courts:
(a)the supreme court of nigeria;
(b) the court of appeal;
(c) the federal excessive (High) court;
(d) the excessive courtroom of the federal capital territory, abuja;
(e) A High court of a state
(f) the sharia court of appeal of the federal capital territory, abuja;
(g) a sharia court of attraction of a state;
(h) the normal courtroom of appeal of the federal capital territory, abuja;
(i) a customary court of apeal of a kingdom;
What the above translates to is that the code of behavior tribunal isn’t a court docket vested with judicial powers inside the scope of the charter. similarly, officials of the code of conduct tribunal are not judicial officers in the scope of section 318 of the charter.
Also, one may argue that further to the 9 (9) courts listed in segment 6(5) of the constitution, the charter best acknowledges a advanced court of record as may be prescribed in an act of the national meeting; and a superior court docket of document as can be prescribed in a regulation of the house of assembly of a nation.
Phase 6(3) of the charter states:
“The courts to which this segment relates, set up by using this constitution laid out in subsection 5 (a) to (i) of this phase shall be the most effective advanced courts of record in nigeria; and shop as in any other case prescribed by using the country wide assembly or by using the house of assembly of a nation”
Upon a careful perusal of the relevant provisions of the code of conduct tribunal act at the side of the constitution, the proposition may be made that the code of behavior tribunal has did not qualify the code of conduct tribunal act as a court docket of advanced report.
THE PLACE OF THE CODE OF CONDUCT TRIBUNAL
Having set up that the code of Conduct tribunal is not conferred with judicial powers below the charter, the query that now arises is “what powers can the tribunal exercising?”
The code of conduct tribunal was set up to be an administrative court docket, independent of control from both the Government and the judiciary exercising jurisdiction over public officials.
Currently the code of behavior tribunal stated in the justice onnoghen case that it isn’t always bound by using the selections of the high court docket as they may be all courts of equal jurisdiction, however only the selections court docket of attraction and ideally suited court docket.
The court docket of enchantment is however yet to make a pronouncement on the above and it might be thrilling to realize the final results.
In conclusion, an try to region the code of conduct tribunal within the judicial hierarchy might be a futility.
Although the tribunal sporting events some shape of judicial powers, it nevertheless remains merely an administrative frame. examples of any such frame are the court docket marshal and the prison practitioners disciplinary committee.