The Kebbi State governor, Atiku Bagudu, has sacked the acting Chief Judge of state, Elizabeth Asabe Karatu, for petitioning the National Judicial Council, NJC, over the governor’s refusal to confirm her as substantive chief judge.
In a ceremony held Friday at the Government House, the governor swore-in Justice Sulaiman Ambursa as Mr Karatu’s replacement.
Mrs Karatu recently wrote a petition to the NJC alleging that she was denied her rights to confirmation because she is a Christian.
In the petition exclusively obtained by DAILY NIGERIAN, the acting chief judge said politics of religion and her firm belief in justice and fairness are some of the reasons the state governor denied her rights despite the recommendation of NJC.
In the petition, Mrs Karatu also cautioned the NJC against appointment of Mr Ambursa to replace her in view of his alleged corruption.
On January 17, 2019, the Kebbi State House of Assembly also confirmed Mrs Karatu as substantive chief judge of the state, but the governor refused to act on the Assembly’s confirmation.
In a letter to the governor, referenced KBHA/LEG/001/XI and entitled RE: APPOINTMENT AND REQUEST FOR CONFIRMATION OF JUSTICE ELIZABETH ASABE KARATU AS CHIEF JUDGE OF KEBBI STATE, the speaker of the state House of Assembly Abdulmumini Kamba conveyed the Assembly’s approval.
“Reference to your submission dated, 6th November, 2018, I am glad to inform you that at an Executive Session held on Thursday, 17th January, 2019, the Hon. House resolved and confirmed Justice Elizabeth Asabe Karatu as the Chief Judge of Kebbi State,” the three-paragraph letter read in part.
Mrs Karatu, who is due to retire on July 5, 2019, was also denied right to swear-in the governor on May 29, 2019.