The Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria ( JUSUN ), Osun Chapter, on Wednesday, declared an indefinite strike following tear gas fired at protesting workers by the police .
JUSUN chairman, Mr Oluwagbemiga Eludire, who announced the strike, said it was necessary in order to put a stop to mismanagement of the judiciary in the state .
Eludire said that Osun Chief Judge, Justice Adepele Ojo, had declared war against workers, adding that the union would not back down except answers were provided to the questions asked the embattled CJ.
He said that the union had picket the office of the CJ for the purpose of trashing unresolved issues which include the unlawful suspension of some of its members for over 57 months without a recourse to the Judicial Service Commission.
“The stoppage of training of judiciary workers at the NJI despite adequate provision and non payment of wardrobe allowances for judiciary workers despite adequate provision of same in the budget.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalled that Gov. Adeleke had on Nov. 16 purportedly approved the suspension of Ojo, following recommendations of the state legislative.
A statement by Mr Olawale Rasheed, spokesman to Gov. Adeleke stated that the resolution passed was to give the lawmakers room to investigate the allegations against the Chief judge.
Rasheed stated that Gov. Adeleke also approved the appointment of Justice Olayinka Afolabi as the Acting Chief Judge of the state.
The swearing-in of Afolabi as acting CJ, however, did not hold as the Deputy Governor, Mr Kola Adewusi, scheduled to oversee the event, and Justice Afolabi, the Acting Chief Judge, did not show up at the venue of the exercise on Nov. 17.
The NJC also did not give approval for the suspension of Justice Ojo and for her replacement by Justice Afolabi.
On Nov. 19, Gov. Adeleke reversed himself, and denied that he suspended Justice Ojo from office.
The Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, Mr Kolapo Alimi, stated in Osogbo on Nov. 19 that the governor had not even appointed any judicial officer as acting Chief Judge.
He added that Gov. Adeleke only recommended the acting chief judge to the NJC, being the most senior in line.
“The government of Osun State has denied news reports that Gov. Adeleke has removed the Chief Judge and appointed an acting Chief Judge.
“The governor only forwarded the resolution of the House of Assembly and recommendation for an acting appointment to the Chief Justice of the Nigeria for decision and action.
“With all sense of responsibility, it is important to set the records straight.
“Gov. Adeleke only notified the Chief Justice of Nigeria as the Chairman of the NJC in writing about the resolutions of the House of Assembly following a series of petitions made against the chief judge.
“In the communication, the governor intimated the CJN of the recommendation of the House that the Chief Judge should step aside.
“He included his own submission for an acting appointment to fill the vacuum while the NJC reviews and decides on the petition.
“The governor in the same letter recommended to the CJN, the appointment of the most senior judicial officer, Justice Olayinka Afolabi for thorough consideration and further processing by the same NJC through the CJN.
“We therefore state categorically that Gov. Adeleke has not appointed any judicial official as acting Chief Judge and nobody has been sworn in as Acting Chief Judge of Osun,’’ Alimi stated.(NAN)