The Nigerian judges (referred to in this article, include those of the Area Courts, Magistrate Courts and the Customary Courts and other quasi-judicial bodies) are appointed mainly to dispense justice to the deserving litigants or persons in a case before them in the court of law. It is the reasoning of this paper that it is very important to remind Nigerian judges of their status and implications and or consequences of their actions and or inactions as judges on the bench so that before God Almighty, I would have been free that I have conveyed to them through this article the need for them to act as ‘Vicegerents’ of God Almighty on earth! Also, if I later (in very few years to come, (though with God’s support)) find myself on the bench as a judge of a High Court or on the higher bench, that this article serves as a reminder to me myself as a judge on the bench to do justice on earth, hence, this topic!
Respectfully, Nigerian judges need to realize the need for them to remember that God has placed them in the position that they currently occupy with the focus of dispensing ‘justice’ and not to propagate ‘injustice’ on earth. It is also important that Nigerian judges (for those who would love to save their heads) to reject corruption on the bench without anyone hunting them! Nigerian judges must also ensure that the tasks of their being judges on the bench must be done as ‘Deputies of God’ on earth (Vicegerent) and therefore, must be done with their utmost strength and value that God has granted them and not with sheer laziness, nonchalance and or lack of passion (all for the service of God Almighty)! They must ensure that they act as judges while accounting for their deeds daily before God Almighty would assess them and or before their accountability before God Almighty on the Day of Judgment! Respectfully, abuse of judicial powers is nothing but ‘oppression’on earth which is against God’s purpose for placing those judges as His Vicegerents on the bench to do justice on earth and therefore must be avoided by every judge in Nigeria! Respectfully in my humble view, any judge that fails his official duties and or misuse his capacity as a judge on the bench and or on earth against God’s purpose would have inherited ‘Hell fire’ for himself and would only have himself to blame before the Supreme Judge on the Day of Judgment! In fact, such a corrupt judge’s family, wealth, acquaintances, connections, etc., would not be able to rescue him or save him from God’s wrath and or punishment either by devising some of the delaying tactics deployed by some corrupt lawyers to cause delay to a case as all these would not be possible before God Almighty on that Day!
Furthermore, it is important to also reason as to what God desires from Nigerian judges?! In my respectful view, God desires from them summarized as follows: justice in each and every case that is assigned to them to adjudicate upon; justice in every proceedings in each particular case that they preside over; good, effective and efficient use of their judicial powers and discretions; humility on the bench and the reluctance to be provoked by parties/litigants before them that necessitates revenge or vengeance or uncontrolled use of their judicial powers in any way; put in place such machinery that would restrain them from having any link with ‘bribery’ and or ‘corruption’ including those that they supervise administering their respective court such as: registrars, clerks, bailiff, etc., as they (the judges) are held accountable for the inefficiency and the lackadaisical attitude leading to perpetration of evils by those administrative staff under their control and or supervision; punctuality they say is the soul of business and therefore, that they be punctual to their official duties and not overtaken by expectation for benefits accruing on the bench (either monthly or at any such other time) only without discharging their duties effectively as they would still account for every entitlement/emolument that they get on the bench without really discharging their official duties as the duty of man to God precedes that of the duty of man to himself; that evidence placed before them by parties/litigants are weighed without any bias or personal interest but with utmost sincerity; they should be conscious of God on the bench; that decisions/judgments are not just handed over to litigants without having consciouslyconsidered with utmost sincerity, the issues for determination formulated before them by parties/litigants, including the corresponding evidence tendered and admitted before them, stand for nothing but the truth, etc.
Therefore, I humbly wish to respectfully remind Nigerian judges that some judges had died while holding their official position as judges and no one (and no judge) knows who would die and at what time would such judge die (in fact, death is certain but only God knows when, how, where and by what means!)!
I also wish to encourage the National Judicial Council of Nigeria to recommend judges who would continue to be God’s Vicegerent on the bench and not those persons who are only after perpetrating corruption and evils of all levels on earth in the interest of justice! I also wish that (if by God’s desire for me to be a judge of a High Court or a higher court) I be reminded all these my kind and sincere advice for our Nigerian judges!
Finally, God loves justice and a just person! I therefore respectfully advise justice by our Nigerian judges! I pray that God Almighty make it easy for them as it is indeed a challenging task to be a judge on earth but for those with good faith, God would be their support so that they would be able to fulfill His purposes on the bench as His Vicegerents on earth! I am happy to be God’s Vicegerent on earth too and passionate to be a judge as His Vicegerent on the bench to do justice on earth!