Senate confirms Buhari’s nominee as Customary Court of Appeal President

National Assembly Complex
National Assembly Complex

It took the Nigerian Senate just 15 minutes to scrutinise and confirm Abaze Abubakar Sadiq, a nominee for President of Customary Court of Appeal, FCT Abuja.

In what could be referred to as record time confirmation, the lawmakers, after standing down their rules to accommodate the nominee’s confirmation, did not ask the nominee any question, as is usually the case.

The process started with a reading of the letter from President Muhammadu Buhari seeking the approval of the Senate for the nomination.

“Pursuant to section 266(4) of the 1999 constitution as amended and upon the advice of the National Judicial Council, I hereby present for confirmation, by the Senate, the appointment of Justice Abaze Abubakar Musa Sadiq, as the president Customary Court of Appeal, FCT Abuja.

“While hoping that this appointment will be expeditiously considered and confirmed by the distinguish Senate, please accept Mr Senate President the assurances of my highest consideration,” the letter reads.

The letter was read by the Presiding Officer, Ike Ekweremadu, at 11.29 a.m.

Shortly after, Senate Leader, Ahmed Lawan, prayed his colleagues to stand down the Senate rules to expedite confirmation of the nominee.

He said, “This Senate and indeed the National Assembly will be sitting for close to the last time and I believe that an issue as request by Mr President is significant that we cannot afford it go through all the processes of confirmation process and procedures.

“I, therefore, move that we suspend all the process that ordinarily it should have gone through with a view to meeting this national interest by confirming the nominee in the committee of the whole.”

His prayer was seconded by Chukwuka Utazi (PDP, Enugu North) and adopted by other senators.


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Thereafter, the nominee was ushered into the chamber and given the chance to brief the lawmakers on his resume.

He told the lawmakers that he was called to bar in 1984 and became a judge of the Customary Court of Appeal in 1993.

Mr Ekweremadu opened the floor for questioning but none of the lawmakers asked the nominee a question.

Instead, Mr Lawan, Shehu Sani (Kaduna-PRP) and Barau Jibrin (Kano-APC) all praised Mr Sadiq for his ‘befitting’ resume and ‘competence.’

The nominee was eventually confirmed by 11.44 a.m.

Usual process

Ordinarily (without standing down the Senate rules), the nominee is supposed to go through a process of scrutiny at the Senate committee stage.

In this case, the letter from the president would be referred to the Committee on Judiciary to work on.

The committee would then invite the nominee, scrutinise his resume, and ask relevant questions.

The committee, through its chairman, will thereafter present its report, in the form of findings and recommendations, to the whole senate who may either confirm or disapprove the nomination.

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