Cross River Assembly Refuses to Confirm Ikpeme as CJ


Cross River State House of Assembly has rejected Jutice Akon Ikpeme as substantive chief judge of the state over her ancestry.

The House in a voice vote declined her confirmation after rejecting two parallel reports presented by a divided committee on judiciary that screened Ikpeme.

In the last four months, the House has been dilly-dallying in confirming Ikpeme even as it has attracted public outcry.

In one of the reports, Efah Esua, chairman of the committee, accepted her nomination as substantive chief judge and recommended that the House gives the go ahead.

However, in a parallel report, Godwin Akwaji, representing Obudu state constituency alongside five others, recommended that Akon be rejected because she is not from Cross River.

As a result of the impasse, the House after extensive deliberations on both reports constituted themselves into Committee of the Whole House which ultimately rejected her confirmation through a voice vote

Speaking during plenary, Ekpo Ekpo Bassey, member representing Bakassi, cautioned the House against setting a bad precedence.

“This is my fifth year in the House and I have never seen two reports by a committee being presented to the House. The House has to be on the side of justice at all times and avoid setting a bad precedence,” he said.

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