The Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodimma has sworn-in two new Judges – Justice Alma Ngozi Eluwa and Justice Dominica Okwuchi Okoroji – for Imo State Judiciary with a charge on them to defend the oath they took by ensuring that they serve the course of justice without fear or favour.
Performing the ceremony at the Executive Council Chambers Government House, Owerri the Governor informed that the judiciary is meant to strengthen, not only our democracy, but instruments of democracy.
According to him, the judiciary is one of the most important arms of government that exists as an arbiter between the Legislature and the Executive.
The Governor said the swearing-in of the Judges by the Executive is only an interpretation of the law and explains the role the judiciary plays in the sustenance of democracy which is seen by many as the last hope of common man, mainly because it ensures that justice is served to all irrespective of social status.
He went further to emphasize that the judiciary protects the interest of all, therefore, those who serve in its temple must be above board just like the Caesar’s wife. “This means justice must be dispensed to all manner of people without fear or favour.”
Governor Uzodimma harped on the fact that the sacred duty of the judiciary presupposes that our Lordships must be blind to friendship and sentiments in the discharge of their duty.
In other words, their interpretation of the law must be in “consonance with exactly what the law says, since everyone is presumed innocent until proven otherwise in the court of law.”
“Therefore the Judges must courageously dispense justice in such a manner that it will be seen to have been done,” he said.
The Governor seized the opportunity to reiterate his administration’s believe in the separation of powers when he said, “on the part of Executive, this administration believes so much in the doctrine of separation of powers among the three arms of government”.
“That is why his government has been taken the welfare of judges very seriously and created an enabling environment for judges to operate independently. This is true in that given the ugly experiences in the past, the judiciary in Imo State today is enjoying a new lease of life.”
He therefore congratulated the newly sworn–in judges and urged them “to commit themselves to deepening of our democracy through the spotless discharge of their onerous duties” while wishing them the best of luck and God’s guidance.
In their response read by Hon. Justice Alma Eluwa, they affirmed that as judicial officers, they pledge to remain true to their Oath of Office; to be incorruptible and to exhibit impeccable moral and behavioral attributes.
Again, they pledged to be “highly analytical in their consideration of legal issues, resulting in unassailable, unimpeachable, and incisive judgments, which will remain their indelible contributions to the development of the legal and judicial process in Nigeria.”
They also said they “will dispense justice to all manner of persons without fear or favour, affection or ill will, timorously.”
They acknowledged that their appointment bestows immense privileges on them, as well as awesome responsibilities, and that “they will strive, God being their helper, to exhibit those qualities which are most desirable in a Judge – a good sense of judgment, independence of mind and thought, impartiality, honesty, erudition, a probing and discerning mind, a sound grasp of the law, and above all an unwavering commitment to justice and equity.”
They also expressed their profound gratitude and immense appreciation to the Governor for their appointments as judges of the high court of Imo State and pledged to work diligently and assiduously to justify the confidence reposed on them.