Ex-Minister, others back 50 years jail term for corrupt judges

Taoheed Adedoja

A former Minister of Sports , Prof. Taoheed Adedoja, on Tuesday expressed support for the 50 years jail term recommended for corrupt judges by delegates at the National Conference.

Mr. Adedoja told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the jail term for corrupt judges, death sentence for rapists and life imprisonment for those who embezzle public funds were in order.

“The recommendations are very okay as long as it will not be personalised and politicised.

“Personalisation and politicisation of issues of public interest like corruption had in the past made nonsense of Nigerian laws,” Mr. Adedoja said.

An Ibadan-based legal practitioner, Akintayo Adeyemi, said it was not the severity of the punishment that was important but enforcement of the law.

“There are laws made to guide the conduct of all across different strata and professions, but the enforcement procedures are so defective.

“So, it is not the length of time of punishing any corrupt judge or public officer that matters, but ensuring a good working environment for them.

“The recommendations should, instead, be focused on ensuring better welfare for judges, civil servants and all members of the society.

“People from all areas of our national life are frustrated because of poverty occasioned by corruption,” Adeyemi said.

A community leader, Sesan Sode, on his part lamented that unemployment was responsible for the corruption in the country.

“Although, the recommendations are good, government must first empower the people before enforcing any stringent law,” Mr. Sode said.

Ajibola James, an Ibadan- based human rights activist and legal adviser to the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Oyo State Council, expressed worry over the will to
implement the recommendations.

“Most of those delegates will not allow the recommendation to be effective even if it becomes law.

“Besides, to what extent are the already made laws implemented?

“As far as I am concerned, these recommendations are another exercise in futility,” James said.

Delegates at the ongoing National Conference on June 19 recommended 50 years jail term for corrupt judges, life imprisonment for embezzlement of public funds and death sentence for rapists.


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