Alleged age falsification: Court dismisses suit against acting CJN

Acting CJN, Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad
Acting CJN, Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad

The FCT High Court, on Friday dismissed a suit, accusing the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Tanko Mohammed, of age falsification for lack of ‘’Locus Standi’’.

The judge, Danlami Senchi, held that the suit filed by Tochi Michael, a 46-year-old man sometimes in April, ought to have been filed before the court by way of writ of summons and not originating summon.

The judge also held that there was no evidence before the court to prove Mr Michael’s case that Mr Mohammed reduced his age from December 31, 1950 to December 31, 1953 as claimed by the plaintiff.

Mr Senchi also held that the claimant did not specify in the originating summons the special interest he has in the suit adding that the claimant has no ‘locus standi’ to institute such action.

“There is nowhere in the document before the court where the claimant have been injured by the defendant, the claimant also did not disclosed further much information about himself.

“Where a suit was not commence with due process of the law, it was quite clear that this suit was commence by way of originating summon instead of writ; the claimant has failed to show to the court necessary document to show that the defendant falsified his age

“I hereby declared that the date of birth of the defendant is Dec. 31, 1953 and not Dec. 31, 1950; this suit is hereby dismissed in entirety,’’ Mr Senchi held.

According to the judge, the attitude of the claimant counsel, Melkizadeck Zaro, is nothing but to scandalised, malign and destroy the person of the CJN and the entire judiciary.

The judge also ordered that the registrar of the Supreme Court should commence a disciplinary action against the claimant counsel for supplying false information to breach the law.

Mr Senchi also awarded a N10 million fines against the claimant to serve as a deterrent to others who are bent in carrying false information and must be paid within three weeks from the day of the judgment.

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Mr Michael in his originating summon with suit No. FCT/HC/BW/CV/79/2019, alleged that the CJN deliberately falsified his date of birth.

He alleged that the CJN falsified his date of birth from December 31, 1950 as contained in all his official records including that of WAEC to December 31, 1953 upon his appointment as a judicial officer.

The petitioner in the originating summon is praying the court to determine whether such act of the CJN does not constitute a criminal act of perjury, falsification and forgery.

Mr Michael in the originating summon also prayed the court to determine whether by falsifying his date of birth from December 31, 1950 to December 31, 1953 upon being appointed to Nigeria Bench as a judicial officer he has not breach the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The petitioner is also praying the court to determine whether Mr Mohammed has not breached the Code of Conduct for judicial officers and consequently brought the image of Nigeria Judiciary to a state of disrepute and odium.

The petitioner in his reliefs is praying the court for a declaration that the defendant falsified his date of birth and that the defendant has desecrated the breach of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

He is also praying for an order directing the Inspector General of Police (IGP) to prosecute the defendant for the offence of perjury and an order which the court may deem it fit.

But the CJN counsel, Sam Ologunorisa, SAN, had informed the court that the plaintiff and his counsel information against the CJN was not true and urged the court to dismiss the suit.

(NAN)

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