By Adebayo Obajemu
In deference to intense criticism and pressure, most especially a letter written to the president by the highly respected former military governor of Kaduna State, Col Abubakar Umar which alleged that the president was reluctant to nominate Monica Mensem, Buhari has sent in the name of Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem as nominee for the position of President Court of Appeal.
With her name sent to the Senate for confirmation as the substantive President Court of Appeal in line with the recommendation of the National Judicial Council (NJC), President Buhari has bowed to public pressure.
The new development was disclosed by President Buhari in a tweet posted this afternoon through his official twitter handle.
The president in his statement said, ”I have sent the nomination of Justice Monica Dongban Mensen, Acting President Court of Appeal to the Senate for confirmation as President Court of Appeal in line with the recommendation of the National Judicial Council.”
I have sent the nomination of Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem, Acting President, Court of Appeal, to the Senate for confirmation as President, Court of Appeal, in line with the recommendation of the National Judicial Council.
Monica Dongban-Mensem who is the most senior Judge of the court of appeal was first appointed in an acting capacity on March 5, 2020, for an initial term of 3 months, following the retirement of the then President court of appeal, Zainab Bulkachuwa and subsequent recommendation from the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Ibrahim Muhammad.
Her tenure in acting capacity was further extended for another 3 months on May 29, 2020, following the expiration of the initial 3 months.
Although some of the critics expressed concerns at the delay in the confirmation of Dongban-Mensen ad the appeal court president, the presidential media aide, Garba Shehu, said that the president is not a rubber stamp and would rather wait for relevant security clearance before her confirmation.
Going further, Shehu said that this is not about ethnicity or religion but rather security and law enforcement agencies being allowed to complete their work and as such the president should not be stampeded in carrying out his constitutional responsibilities.