Justice Olukayode Ariwoola has been sworn in by President Muhammadu Buhari as the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria following the sudden resignation of Justice Ibrahim Muhammad Tanko . The Justice, who was the most senior judge of the Supreme Court after Justice Tanko, took the oath of office on the 27th of June, at the Executive Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa in the presence of other Justices of the Supreme Court.
The President commended Justice Tanko for his contributions to Nigeria’s judiciary, strengthening democracy and improving national development. He also conferred on the outgoing CJN, the national honour of the Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger (GCON).
While Justice Tanko cited ill health as the reason behind the decision, the resignation came exactly a week after fourteen judges of the Supreme Court petitioned him on withholding Justices’ entitlements, deteriorating welfare and facilities, and failing to ensure smooth administration of the nation’s highest court. The former CJN had replied that just like other establishments in the country, financial constraints had made it impossible to meet some of the welfare needs of the Justices.
Justice Ariwoola is the third judge to occupy the office of Chief Justice of Nigeria during President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.