Twenty-four hours after Justice Adamu Abdu-Kafarati retired as the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, nobody has been sworn in to replace him as of Friday.
The scheduled swearing-in of the next most senior judge of the court, Justice John Tsoho, as the Acting Chief Judge of the court, failed to hold on Friday.
Guests, including a former Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Michael Andoakaa (SAN), who were at the Supreme Court for the event scheduled to take place at 10:00 a.m. on Friday have dispersed.
Also, another judge of the court, Justice Mojisola Olatoregun, who was also at the ceremonial court of the apex court left around 10:40 a.m. when there was no sign in sight that the event would hold.
Justice Tsoho was also at the venue briefly before he left.
No formal announcement cancelling the event was made on Friday, although press invitation was issued by the apex court earlier on Thursday.
Although the oath-taking by Tsoho was supposed to be presided by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad, there were speculations on Friday that the CJN refused to show up for the event on the grounds that he had yet to receive any communication from President Muhammadu Buhari in respect of the appointment.
As was the court’s tradition, the second most senior judge of the court, Justice John Tsoho, ordinarily should be sworn-in the next day (July 26), in an acting capacity, pending confirmation by the Senate.
By 9.30am on Friday, Justice Tsoho, some other judges of the Federal High Court and other officials of the court were already seated in the ceremonial court of the Supreme Court, venue of the planned swearing-in, scheduled But, by 11.30am it is still not clear if the event will hold.
Officials of the Supreme Court, who are always around prior to the commencement of such events, were absent.
An official of the court later came to inform those already seated that he has been instructed to lock the door to the ceremonial court.
Guest and officials of the FHC, who had come to witness the event later vacated the courtroom.
While some later left the court premises. others are still waiting at the Supreme Court’s foyer for an official position o the issue.
For now, the FHC is currently without a Chief Judge, since Justice Kafarati retired formally on July 25 and Justice Tsoho, who is the most senior judge of the court, has not bee inaugurated.