The National Judicial Council has commenced investigation into the allegation of judicial misconduct without due regard to rules of the court leveled against a Judge of the Bayelsa State High Court, Justice Ineikade Eradiri.
The NJC, in a letter confirming the receipt of the petition against Justice I. Eradiri dated 28th of February, 2019 with reference number NJC/S6/BAY HC/9/1/154, assured the petitioner, Chief Perekeme Kpodoh, of speedy investigation.
The petition, which was made available to newsmen in Yenagoa by a human right advocacy group known as Niger Delta Coalition for Peace and Defence of Human Rights(NDCPDHR) led by its Coordinator, Comrade Nelson Patrick
The Petitioner accused the Bayelsa High Court Judge of alleged judicial rascality by ignoring an application on stay of proceeding at the Court of Appeal which bothers on an appeal against a rulling delivered by the Court in an application wherein the Judge was accused of bias is a clear case of conspiracy with the state government to indict him by all mean for political gains.
In the two pages petition dated 11th February, 2019, Chief Perekeme Kpodoh, which prayed the National Judicial Council to leveled appropriate sanction against the erring State Court Judge and insisted that the Judge is part of a conspiracy to convict him for an offence he is innocent of, “despite a clear and credible case of a real like hood of bias made against Justice Eradiri and indeed driven by the said conspiracy, Justice Ineikade Eradiri ignored the fact that there is presently in the court of Appeal a case seeking to disqualify him and proceeded to adjourned the matter for continuation of hearing. ”
“I reasonably believe that the conduct of Justice Ineikade Eradiri amounts to judicial rascality for which an appropriate sanction should be meted out.”
In an affividavit verifying the petition, which was deposed to by his brother, Mr. John Amayare, due to the fact that he is still in prison custody, recalled the court proceedings presided over by the accused Judge and his ruling that has continued to deny bail to the petitioner and refusal to hands off the case despite alleged bias in a petition filed before the State Chief Judge and a formal motion on notice.
According to him, “the Judge in his ruling on the bail application referred to the proof of evidence filed in the case as ones that are serious and not frivolous. I am very much concerned with those comments of the judge because the issue of seriousness of evidence or that of the proof of evidence are not ones that are frivolous goes to the root of the matter and for the Judge to make such reference while refusing my bail application is a manifestation of prejudice and explicable only in the construction that the judge has decided the case against me pre-trial. ”
“Accordingly, I wrote to the Chief Judge of the State applying that the case be transfered from Justice Ineikade Eradiri court to another judge but the application was refused by the Chief Judge without stating any reason. I here upon, by motion dated and filed 23rd of November, 2018, prayed Justice Eradiri to disqualify himself from hearing and determining the case YHC/95c/2018 between the State and Perekeme Kpodoh on the ground that the allegation of real like hood of bias has been made out against him but same was dismissed in the ruling of the Judge delivered on the 21st of December, 2018”
Comrade Nelson Patrick, the National Coordinator of the Human Rights advocacy group known as Niger Delta Coalition for Peace and Defence of Human Rights (NDCPDHR), in a covering letter to newsmen, called on the National Judicial Council (NJC) not to allow political consideration to influence it’s investigation as “many oppressed person under the administration of Gov. Seriake Dickson are seeking intervention with truth and punitive measures against judges ,who in the perception of the oppressed are used by the State Government to pervert the law and deny opposition freedom in Bayelsa.”