News

Date: 12/05/2020

Battle Against COVID-19 Shouldn’t Slow Down the Justice System, Sanwo-Olu Charges Judicial Officers.

    •LAGOS APPOINTS EIGHT HIGH COURT JUDGES

Members of the judicial arm of Government have a duty to keep the wheel of justice administration turning in this period of Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic by fully acquainting themselves with the new culture of justice dispensation being driven by technology.

This was the charge by the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to the newly-appointed judges of the High Court of Lagos on Tuesday

The eight judges took the oath before the Governor and members of the State’s cabinet at a swearing-in held in the Executive Council chamber in the State House, Alausa.

Sanwo-Olu said the continuity of judicial services in the period of public health emergency remained vital to boosting people’s confidence in the administration of justice system and toensure adequate enforcement of regulations initiated to stop the spread of the pandemic.

He said: “This chamber we are holding the swearing-in has just been opened for the first time in the last two months.This is the reality of the global coronavirus pandemic, which has evolved new culture in our interactions at homes and offices.

“In this period of public health emergency, we need the judiciary to keep the wheel of the justice system moving. The administration of justice system must not be halted because of the health crisis. Our judiciary should fully adapt to the evolving culture and beat the services of those who seek redress and justice at the court.

“I have no doubt that the Lagos State Judiciary, under the leadership of My Lord Honourable Justice Kazeem Alogba, will be an arm of Government that we can continue to rely on as a partner in boosting people’s confidence in Government and justice system.”

Sanwo-Olu said judges earned their nominations and appointments to the High Court of the State based ontheir sterling credentials and experience in their respective areas of engagement.

The Governor charged the judges to dispense justice without fear or favour, advising them not to soil their hard-earned reputation and family names in the course of discharging their duties.

He said: “Having gone through your resumes, I know you have all distinguished yourselves in the legal profession and we expect you are bringing in your years of experience and service. We are convinced this journey would raise the standards of our judicial service.

“I congratulate our newly sworn-in Honorable Justices and we believe you all have what it takes to be fair and equitable in dispensation of justice to our citizens. By being sworn in as judges, you have brought honour to your family names. However, you must ensure that your names are not tarnished in the course of discharging your duty.”

The Governor thanked National Judicial Council (NJC) for the painstaking vetting of the appointed judges’ credentials, noting that he was convinced that quality and calibre of the new judges would improve judicial process in the State.

The Governor used to occasion to re-emphasise his commitment to ridding the State of the ravaging pandemic,giving assurance that the State Government would continue to collaborate with stakeholders on the frontline and coordinate response strategy to battle the virus. He also promised to maintain transparency in communicating the response activities to the public.

Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo, described the event as “special occasion”in the evolution of judiciary in the State. The quality of credentials of the appointed judges, the State’s chief law officer said, will be brought to bear in fast-tracking administration of justice system.

Solicitor-General and Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Justice, Ms. Titilayo Shitta-Bey, disclosed that the process of nomination of the judges was transparent and extended to different areas of legal profession, public service, private sector and the magistracy.

She said: “The transparency in the selection process of the new judges has deepened our trust in the leadership of Governor Sanwo-Olu. The appointment of these eight judges, having passed through the rigorous competence assessment and selection process, will strengthen the capacity of the Lagos Judiciary which in turn will translate to an improved service delivery in the justice sector.”

Hon. Justice Dorcas Olatokun, who spoke on behalf of the appointed judges, appreciated Governor Sanwo-Olu for finding them worthy of the appointment, which she described as a “unique privilege” to contribute their quota in deepening justice system. She pledged to be upright and fearless in the discharge of the duty.

Other judges sworn in were Hon. Justice Omotola Oguntade, Hon. Justice Yahqub Oshoala, Hon. Justice Olufunke Sule-Amzat, Hon.Justice Rasul Olukolu, Hon. Justice Sharafa Olaitan, Hon. Justice Ezekiel Ashade and Hon. Justice Adeniyi Pokanu.
Lolade Ige/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
12/05/2020




Date: 28/04/2020

Lagos Courts to hear Cases through Zoom, Skype remote hearings.

Lagos States Courts are now to hear cases through remote hearing effective from May 4th, 2020, the Chief Judge, Justice Kazeem Alogba has said.

He said remote hearings shall be by Zoom, Skype for business or any other video communication method approved by the Court.

Justice Alogba said a new practice direction has also been issued to give effect to the new development.

It followed the directive issued by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Tanko Muhammad last week instructing heads of courts to device ways of hearing urgent matters without compromising social distance regulations.

Justice Alogba  said the new practice direction was issued pursuant to the provisions of Section6(6) and Section 274 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), Section 87(1) High Court Law of Lagos State 2015, Order 49 Rules 1, 2and 3 High Court of Lagos State (Civil Procedure) Rules 2019, Section 90(2)Lagos State Magistrates’ Court Law 2015, Section 354(1) Administration of Criminal Justice Law of Lagos State 2015 and any other enabling legislation,

He  said the new Practice Direction will apply “to new cases where there is urgency and pending cases involving urgent and or time-bound interlocutory applications such as bail applications, fundamental human Rights matters where the applicant is in custody, adoption of addresses, rulings and judgments or any other matter as the chief judge may approve.

He said it also sets out the guidelines to be adopted in remote hearing, recognizing the urgent need for the Judiciary to put in place measures to guarantee continued access to justice and expeditious disposal of cases while minimizing the risk of transmission of Covid-19.

The Chief Judge said the objectives of the new practice direction is  to ensure timely and efficient disposal of cases; use of suitable technology;  just determination of the proceedings; and efficient use of available judicial and administrative resources.

He said the method by which remote hearings will be conducted shall be as directed by the Court in accordance with the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), applicable Laws, Rules and this Practice Direction.

 

Towards this end, the chief judge urged parties and counsels to ensure that every court document filed electronically or at the Court Registry has the email address and mobile telephone number of the counsel o rcontact person where parties are not represented by counsel.

“The Registry will receive documents for filing electronically. All documents to be filed must be scanned or converted to an appropriate PDF format and forwarded to the Registry via designated email address or whatsapp. Where documents are filed by counsel, each process shall be signed and sealed by such counsel;

“Provided that where it is impracticable to file processes electronically, same may be filed at the Registry of the Court.”

He instructed the Chief Registrar to designate appropriate officials who shall assess the fees payable by Parties and communicate same to them by email, whatsapp or text message while parties shall pay the assessed fees by electronic transfer into the bank account of the court.

“A copy of the electronic receipt issued shall be scanned for verification”, he said adding that the document shall be deemed to have been filed when the payment is verified by the Court.

He said the email address and contact telephone number of the Registry shall be made available on the Judicial Information System (JIS)and the Judiciary Website.

“ Notwithstanding the provisions of the High Court of Lagos State (Civil Procedure) Rules 2019 and the Lagos State Magistrates’ Court(Civil Procedure) Rules 2015, service of Court processes may be effected by email, whatsapp or as otherwise directed by the Court”, he said.

The chief judge said service of processes shall be proved by filing an affidavit exhibiting a printout from the electronic device used in sending the process and showing the date and time of receipt of same by the other party.

He said where an electronic mode of service is employed,time shall prima facie begin to run from the date the process was sent.

He directed parties and counsel to liaise with the registry for the purpose of scheduling hearings and to indicate voluntary participation in the remote hearing through the official email of the Court.

Before ordering a remote hearing, he said the registry will liaise with all counsels  on record to ensure that suitable facilities are available explaining that the court will direct  an appropriate remote communication method for the hearing; or an adjournment, if a remote hearing is not possible.

The chief judge said the court will give directions to parties during remote hearings on the use of video and audio during proceedings and that counsel shall dress appropriately and Parties shall be properly dressed for Court proceedings.

The Chief Judge said the proceedings of the remote hearing shall be recorded by the Court and that recording of such proceedings by Counsel and or Parties shall only be with the leave of Court while certified true copy (CTC) of proceedings shall be made available upon request.

He said that adoption of written addresses shall be in compliance with the provisions of the Rules of Court, provided that oral argument thereof may be dispensed with by agreement of parties.

He said that the court shall, through the registry notify counsel and or parties by email or whatsapp of the date reserved for the delivery of judgment and or ruling.


Ololade Ige/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Unit
29/04/2020




Date: 31/03/2020

Lockdown: Lagos CJ Suspends all Court Activities.

All court activities have been suspended in the five judicial divisions of the Lagos state Judiciary, the Chief Judge, Justice Kazeem Alogba has said.

Justice Alogba issued the order following the lock down announced by President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State to combat the Coronavirus pandemic in the state.

The order was contained in a circular titled: “Entry Into Court Premises Guidelines No. 2” dated March 30, 2020 and signed on his behalf by the Chief Registrar, Mrs Taiwo Olatokun.

It notified members of the public of the suspension of all court activities effective yesterday, Tuesday, March 31 until further notice.

The chief Judge directed Administrative Magistrates in the seven Magistrative Districts to sit only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and only to take between hours of 10.00 a.m. and   1. 00 p.m. and take only remand and bail applications on offences such as terrorism, armed robbery, homicide and other non-bailable offences.

It listed the seven Magisterial Districts to include Ikeja,Lagos, Yaba, Ikorodu, Apapa, Badagry and Epe.

It directed the Assistant Chief Registrars(Administrative) in each of the districts to serve  as registrars for such sittings of the magistrate courts
Ololade Ige/ Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
01/04/2020




Date: 05/03/2020

Body of Retired Judges of Lagos Judiciary Felicitates With Justice Isiaka Oluwa, 101.

Retired judges of the Lagos State Judiciary yesterday paid a courtesy visit to one of their own, Justice Isiaka Oluwa, aged 101.

They were received by his wife, Olaide, who ushered them into the family’s large sitting room at his Ilupeju, Lagos residence. The visit by the retired judges to Justice Oluwa was the first of its kind in the history of the Lagos State Judiciary.

He was appointed a judge of the Lagos judiciary in 1974 and retired 37 years ago having attained the mandatory age of retirement.

The body of retired judges of the Lagos State Judiciary was led by Justice Ishola Olorunnimbe, OON. Others are former Chief Judge of the state, Justice Olufunmilayo Atilade, Justice Yishau Yusufu, Justice A.O. Silva, Justice S. O. Ishola, Justice S. O. Hupomu-Wusu, Justice Abike Lufadeju, Justice Titilola Ojikutu-Oshode,Justice Yetunde Idowu, Justice Doris Okuwobi and Justice Olaide Olayinka.

The retired judge was presented with gifts including baskets of varieties of fruits

In his remarks, Justice Olorunnimbe said: “we are making history today as retired judges of the Lagos State Judiciary. This courtesy visit is to let you know that we have not forgotten you”.

He said they deem it fit to share felicitations with him now that he is still alive adding that they will also be with him when he clocks102 years.

Olorunnimbe described Justice Oluwa as a “very remarkable judge and a beacon of hope to all of the retired judges of the Lagos Judiciary”.

He recalled that he had a wonderful time on the bench of Lagos Judiciary.

“We pray to attain your age but not to surpass it. We pray Almighty God to give you more life and good health”, he prayed.

In a vote of thanks, Mrs. Olaide Oluwa, thanked the judges for the felicitations extended to their family.

She expressed appreciation to them and prayed God to give judges on the bench of the Lagos Judiciary with wisdom with which to determine cases brought before them.


Ololade Ige/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
06/03/2020




Date: 06/02/2020

Justice Eniola Folorunso Longe, A Great, Eminent Jurist, by Justice Alogba, Onigbanjo.

The Lagos State Judiciary has held a Valedictory Court Session in honour of late Justice Eniola Folorunso Longe. The event was held at The Foyer, High Court of Lagos State. It had in attendance judges and magistrates of the High Court of Lagos State, Body of Senior Advocates of Nigeria (BOSAN) and Body of Benchers and many legal practitioners among others.

The late Justice Eniola Longe retired from the Lagos State Judiciary in2002 after 19 years of meritorious service to the state Judiciary. He rose to number three position in hierarchy of Lagos State Judiciary before his retirement. He joined the Lagos State bench in March 1983 following pressure and recommendations from some eminent jurists and the bar, particularly the Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SANs) because of his rich credentials.

Lagos State Chief Judge,Honourable Justice Kazeem Alogba, in his valedictory speech, described the late Justice Longe as "a great jurist who dedicated himself to the service and practice of law", adding, " we could say law was his first love." According to Justice Alogba, the late Justice Longe's mind was aroused to study law the day he met late Chief T.O.S. Benson who later became his mentor.

Alogba said, the late jurist, while working as a teacher at Ijebu Muslim College, Ijebu Ode, busied himself preparing for the challenges ahead by reading many books on philosophy, Logic and Latin. He said in 1958, the late judge enrolled for the Holborn Law College correspondence courses. He said he later gained admission and studied law at University College, London between1964 and 1966 and obtained his LLB (Hons) certificate and BL Certificate from the Nigerian Law School in 1968. The late Justice Longe joined the Lagos Judiciary in 1983 and served in various capacities until he retired in 2002. He was Chairman, Armed Robbery Tribunal, Ikeja Zone, between 1986 and 1989.

After obtaining his BL from Certificate from the Nigerian Law School in 1968,the young Longe relocated to Kaduna and joined the Chambers of Thanni and Associates where he cut his legal teeth in private practice. Longe combined his private practice with post graduate studies following his admission into Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in 1975 and completed the programme in 1977. He subsequently proceeded to Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Lagos in 1986. The late Justice Longe started his own private practice called Eniola Longe and Co.(Onibeji Chambers) in Makurdi. Alogba said Longe's career on the bench started when he crossed to the bench and became a Magistrate in Kaduna State Judiciary between 1972 and 1974. He was appointed a Senior Magistrate in Kaduna State and served between 1974 and 1976 and rose to become a Chief Magistrate in Kaduna as at 1977. He was Chief Registrar of Kaduna State High Court of Justice between 1977 and 1978 and was later appointed Director, Public Prosecution,Ministry of Justice, Kaduna. He later rose through the ranks to become the Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Justice, Kaduna between1979 and 1980.

Alogba adduced the late Justice Longe's "meteoric rise" to the top of his career in Kaduna, described as a strange land, to "his prodigious and unstinting devotion to the practice of law". He said Justice Longe returned to Lagos in 1981 and went straight back to private legal practice and first set up his chamber in his home town, Ikorodu and later opened another office at Olowu Street, Ikeja. He said Justice Longe lived an exemplary life,was a loving caring husband to his wife and father and grandfather to his children and grandchildren.

Lagos State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN) in his address at the occasion said the late Justice Longe "stretched through the length and breadth of the legal practice, a feat which only a few have ever achieved". Onigbanjo gave an account of the journey of the late jurist through legal education abroad and at home and practice on the bar and movement to the bench and service in the Northern Nigeria and Lagos state. Onigbanjore called that Justice Longe was sworn in as a Judge of Lagos State Judiciary in1983 and served meritoriously in various capacities for 19 years until his retirement.

According to him,Justice Longe "contributed immensely to the development of law and jurisprudence in Nigeria. "A cursory analysis of My Lords profile depict shim as a thorough and vibrant jurist, educationist per excellence for whom integrity, hard work, fairness and aspiration to do justice at all times were articles of faith. "He is described as a father and friend to all and an adversary to none. "Undoubtedly in my view, his greatest strength was his disarming humility and courtesy to all who encountered him", he said of the late judge. The Lagos State Attorney General remarked that the Valedictory Court Session was to celebrate the late judge for his 19 years of"meritorious service to the state and for "a life-long service to the nation."


Ololade Ige/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
07/02/2020




Date: 10/01/2020

Honourable Justice Okuwobi, A Quintessential Jurist, Bows Out.

The Lagos State Judiciary hasheld a Valedictory Court Session in honour of its Administrative Judge,Honourable Justice Doris Tomilayo Okuwobi, who retired after 42 years ofservice which many described as “meritorious and fulfilling”.

The special court session held atThe Foyer, High Court of Lagos State, Igbosere last Friday to coincide with herbirthday 65th birthday in line with known tradition. She was bornJanuary 10, 1955.

The Chief Judge of Lagos State, HonourableJustice Kazeem Alogba, in his remarks, said he was reluctant to let go ofJustice Okuwobi.  “I found it difficultto believe she is retiring because she has been of invaluable value to us. Thearray of judges of the High Court and justices of the Court of Appeal presenthere today are a testimony of her invaluable estimation to Lagos Judiciary”, hesaid.

Justice Alogba further said thatit was a thing of joy to witness Justice Okuwobi bowing out of service “withoutblemish and any health issue”.

He said Justice Okuwobi was aninvaluable asset, not just to the judiciary but also to Lagos State.

“She is a very cerebral judge,very painstaking, very considerable, a good mother to all and a quintessentialjudicial officer.

“I pray that Almighty Godcontinue to be with her during her retirement”, he said.

The Lagos State Attorney Generaland Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN) in his tribute inhonour of the retired judge described her as a “brilliant Nigerian and a Juristof enviable character” and expressed his belief that she retired from a richand fulfilling career.

Onigbanjo remarked: “It is Juristsuch as my Lord that makes one make a case for the elongation of the term ofyears for High Court Judges.

“There is a saying that the menwho succeed are the efficient few who have the ambition and will power todevelop themselves. Justice Okuwobi was one of those. She was a distinguishedlawyer per excellence and combined her dedication to duty with the power tosucceed and braced up to develop herself.

The list of fine judgementsdelivered by Justice Okuwobi speaks for itself about the dedication with whichshe carried on her constitutional duty while remaining conscious of the socialrealities. Some of those publicized judgements were upheld by the Appellatecourts.

“I have to say that the LagosHigh Court will miss Justice Okuwobi deeply. I would like to quote MahatmaGandhi who said ‘there are no good byes for us; wherever you are you willalways be in our hearts’.

On behalf of the Lagos StateMinistry of Justice, and my colleagues, I wish your Lordship continued soundhealth and deep contentment in all your future endeavours”, Onigbanjo said.

BOSAN which was represented by aformer Lagos State Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice,Lawal Pedro (SAN), in their tribute, said Justice Okuwobi served “meritoriouslyand creditably”.

“A quintessential jurist whocontributed effectively to Lagos Judiciary and these are evident in herlandmark judgment in cases she handled.

“She was a thorough jurist in herown right who believes in justice and fairness and do justice without fair orfavour”.

Chairman, Magistrates Associationof Nigeria, Lagos State Branch, Princess A. B. Olagbegi-Adelabu described theretired jurist as a “combination of beauty and brains”.  She said the degree of what they put intoapplications filed before her has helped to prepare them for what they haveachieved today.

Olagbegi-Adelabu said JusticeOkuwobi impacted positively on Magistrates in the state.

“She was a source of inspirationto many of us as a result of the numerous encounter we had with her. Herinterest in the girl child remain unsurpassable.

” We pray that she would spendher remaining days in prosperity and good health”, she said.

Chairman, NBA Ikorodu,  Bayo Akinlade in his address commended herpunctuality at work, noting she was always in court by 8.00 a.m.  He also praised her dedication to duty and stressedthe need for all to be dutiful and dedicated to work.

“You encouraged me and I amgrateful for that”, he said.

Chairman, NBA Ikeja Branch,Prince Dele Oloke , in his address, described Justice Okuwobi as a thoroughjudge.

Prince Oloke said: “You gave a goodaccount of yourself as a Solicitor General under a military regime and toldthem the truth. While on the bench, you were very thorough, painstaking, reportpunctually on the bench.

“My branch, Ikeja branch of NBA,told me to tell you that you are a courageous judge. Let me tell you thequality of a courageous judge. You shun them at the centre, you embracecontentment, ability to speak the truth and exert the rule of law.

The Legal Adviser of NBA, LagosBranch, Harry Ukaejiofor, who represented the chairman of the branch, in hisaddress noted that the life of the retired judge has been dedicated to the ruleof law and enthronement of justice.

“This is the finish line of alegal career which started 42 years in 1978”, he noted, adding that on her lastday on the bench, minutes after 4.00 p.m., on Thursday, Okuwobi delivered alandmark judgment in her court, attesting to her dedication to duty.

Ukaejiofor said she was kind inand out of the bench and urged all to be kind to one another.

 “She compliments her staff when they do well,a team player and detribalized person. She always gives advice on benefits ofcontentment. We will miss her greatly”, he added.

Responding to the honour doneher, Honourable Justice Okuwobi, noted recent development in the country andacross the world.

She stressed the need toreposition the judiciary effectively, for optimum growth and improved servicedelivery.

“Our judicial process therefore,must be re-engineered and further strengthened to achieve desired goal andenhanced judicial services. In the same vein as we must ensure that theJudiciary is insulated from all forms of infraction, perceived or pre-meditatedviews or notions that tend to detract it from the functions, responsibilitiesand powers of the Judiciary.

“The Judiciary of the 21stCentury must be such that boldly could hold its own, assert its independence,authority and integrity, and rise above the vagaries of limitations andchallenges, to assume its rightful position in modern society. Bearing in mindits critical role and function in ensuring good governance, law and order inthe society”.

According to her: “Justice mustnot only be served, we must ensure at all time, ' that the judicial process ispurged of all encumbrances, identified flaws and clogs on the wheels ofjustice.

“In moving the judiciary forward,our reform strategies must be rightly focused and such that inspires hope,trust and confidence in our judicial system. For this to be achieved, theindependence of judiciary as boldly enunciated in the 1999 Constitution must bestrictly adhered to. This is essential and critical, as there are no two waysto it”, she said.

Though now retired, sheemphasized that her utmost desire and passion would be to see the Judiciaryprogress further.

“Like every other professional,citizen and parent, I crave for a better society, an improved climate forenhanced security, good governance and justice. A society our children andgeneration yet unborn would be proud of. This is the challenge before us.

Looking ahead into the future, Iam no doubt confident with strong hope of a much brighter, fulfilled andprogressively inspired future. A hope premised on the quality and pedigree ofJudicial Officers, Personnel and resource available to the Lagos StateJudiciary.

“Having a hope deeply rooted inYour Lordships‘ ability to lead the Judiciary further into its desired future”,she stressed.

As she bowing out of office,Okuwobi expressed conviction that the State Judiciary has over time evolved toan enviable height and that she was proud to be associated with it.

“Going forward, it is my viewthat our focus in the years and decades ahead would be to evolve effective andinnovative strategies to further the growth of the State Judiciary for a morepurpose-driven change and transformation in our Judicial System. Among others,our efforts should be to ensure that Lagos State Judiciary remained “Primusinter pares” in the quality of justice delivery.

’As a Judiciary Officers, l mustnote that the challenge of growth and development of the Judiciary especially,as we step into new decade, not only rest on our shoulders, but in ourindividual and collective ability, strength and 'determination to inspirechange in the right direction. The world is fast changing and the need for enhancedJudicial System in line.

 Earlier, in a welcome address, the ChiefRegistrar, Mrs. Taiwo Olatokun also noted that the hall mark of the retiredjudge was hard work and that she had respect for junior staff alike. She saidJustice Okuwobi served judiciously and meritoriously.

She said she would also beremembered for her kindness, hard work and prayed God for long life for theretiree.

Tunde Okuwobi, on behalf of theirfamily, thanked the Lagos State Judiciary, Attorney General, the Bench, theBar, Body of Benchers and BOSAN, the different branches of the NBA and other well-wishersfor the honour and a befitting valedictory court session accorded their mother.


Ololade Ige/ Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
14/01/2020




Date: 17/12/2019

Lagos State Governor Commissions Newly Constructed High, Magistrate Courts.

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has commissioned five newly constructed High and Magistrate Courts complexes with a promise that his administration will continue to uphold the rule of law and ensure effective justice delivery.

The new Court complex named after Justice Christopher Olatunde Segun is situated at Ajah-Badore, Eti-Osa Local Government area.

Speaking at the Commissioning on Tuesday, Sanwo-Olu assured al lat the event that the Executive Arm will continue to cooperate with the Judiciary to ensure the Rule of Law remains the centerpiece of Judicial reform in Lagos.

The newly commissioned courts according to the Governor was in fulfillment of his administration’s promise to ensure easy access to justice for all in Lagos State.

“I recall that upon assumption of office, I promised my full support to the Judiciary, in order to enhance Lagos State’s position as a model of judicial administration. Today’s commissioning, coming shortly after the commencement of the 2019/2020 Legal Year, is in fulfillment of that promise.

“There is more to be done, and I would like to assure you that we will not relent or rest on our oars. What we have done here in Ajah-Badore will be extended to other areas in due course.”

The Governor revealed that the building will house the Assistant Chief Registrar, Office of the Public Defender and the Nigerian Bar Association, Eti-Osa Branch, adding that the necessary facilities to enhance the performance of every personnel within the judicial circle who would be using them have been provided for.

“The New Court House Complex being commissioned today consists of two High Courts and three Magistrates’ Courts. The Complex also boasts of ancillary services to enhance the administration of justice: a well-equipped law library, conference room, and facilities to accommodate the Nigeria Bar Association.”

The Chief Judge of Lagos State, Honourable Justice Kazeem Alogba, thanked the Governor for the gesture, stating that the new courts will further help the Judiciary to do a better job in the State.

"Lagos State Judiciary by this gesture has been placed on a good stead to offer efficient and effective service which will reflect in our productivity especially in the Eti-Osa axis of Lagos Sate”.

The Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo, in his remarks noted that the project is a commendable one that will facilitate smooth administration of justice in the state.

He added that the courts will make it unnecessary for lawyers in the Ajah area of Lagos to seek judicial services in Lagos Island and other parts of the state.

He said: “Nothing of this nature has been done in a long while in this axis. This Court House represents a significant and remarkable landmark in the history of judicial intervention and infrastructure in Eti-Osa and Lagos State as a whole.”


Ige Ololade/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
18/12/2019




Date: 25/11/2019

Lagos Chief Judge Promises Improved Capacity Building for Judiciary Staff.

The Chief Judge of Lagos State,Honourable Justice K. O. Alogba has restated the need for improved capacity building amongst the staff of the State Judiciary, saying that adequate training was needed to advance the present state of justice delivery in the State.

Justice Alogba spoke recently at the Year 2019 Management Retreat for the judiciary officers with the theme"Treading the Path of Excellence Through Strategic Transformation"held at the Orchid Hotel, Lekki.

He also reiterated his commitment towards ensuring effective service delivery through the provision of all necessary tools and equipment for a seamless service delivery to the people of the State

The Chief Judge added that the judiciary has put in place a robust welfare package for its officers as a way of addressing sharp practices among the judiciary officers.

Amongst the Resource Facilitators at the retreat was a retired Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Civil Service,Mr. Bashir Braimoh who drilled participants on the “Role of Effective Leadership in Achieving Organisational Vision”.

“The Role of The Public Service in Enhancing Effectiveness in Service Delivery” was another paper presented by a retired Director in the Lagos State Public Service, Mr. Remi Ajalogun, while other papers were on “Emotional Intelligence” and “Health Matters and Well being” which was delivered by Mr. Femi Okunuga & Dr. Shodimu respectively.


Mrs. Ololade Ige / Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
26/11/2019




Date: 10/10/2019

Sanwo-Olu Restates Collaboration with State Judiciary … Presents 50 cars to Magistrates.

The Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwoolu today demonstrated his commitment to support the State Judiciary in the discharge of their duties with the presentation of 50 KIA Automobiles to magistrates of the Lagos State Judiciary.

The Governor at the presentation, said that his decision to make life moderately comfortable for officials of the State Judiciary was in recognition of the critical roles in the interpretation and application of laws for the maintenance of peaceful co-existence across the State.

The Governor who was accompanied by his Deputy, some Exco Members as well as top government officials to the presentation promised to partner with the State Judiciary to ensure an efficient and effective justice service delivery in the State.

Speaking at the event, the Chief Judge of Lagos State, Honourable Justice Kazeem Alogba thanked the Governor for making his promise a reality with the first phase of the presentation of 50 vehicles, describing it as a promise kept

He maintained that the vehicles were long overdue to the Magistrates who had waited since 2010 for their official vehicles and had continued to discharged their duties despite the various challenges associated to the delivery of their assignments.

He therefore called on the Governor to assist in granting approval to ensure that the gesture is extended to other serving Magistrates in the State.

Earlier in her welcome remarks, the Chief Registrar Mrs.Taiwo Olatokun expressed appreciation to the Governor for the kind gesture,pledging that the Magistrates would do their best to ensure unhindered access to free and fair justice delivery for every residents of the State.


Ololade Ige/Bakare Adekunbi
Public Affairs Officers
11/10/2019




Date: 24/09/2019

Alogba Decries Congested State of Nigerian Prisons.

… Calls for Critical Review of ‘Trial WithinTrial’ System

As activities marking the new legal year in the state enters the second day, the Chief Judge of the State, Justice Kazeem Alogba has decried the congested state of prisons across the country.
The Chief Judge, in a welcome remark at this year’s Legal Year Summit, maintained that congestion of prisons has become a major problem to the judiciary over the years.
Justice Alogba who stated that ‘trial within trial’ had been a major contributory factor to prison congestion, disclosed that the decision to decisively address the issue informed the choice of the topic for this year’s Summit on Criminal Justice Sector.
He urged stakeholders to look at ‘trial within trial’ within the context of solving the problem of prison congestion and delayed trial.
The representative of the State Governor at the event, a director in the Ministry of Justice, Saheed Quadri said that the delivery of prompt and efficient justice remains a pivotal objective of his administration and that he would continually support the judiciary to achieve this goal.
He urged the Judiciary to ensure that its primary purpose which is to interpret the law is held sacrosanct and that this duty is not eroded under any circumstance.
He also advised that the plea bargain and restorative justice process must be taken seriously by all stakeholders as data has proved it to be very productive and that the process can assist in decongesting the courts and prisons.
Contesting the constitutional legality of ‘trial by trial’ system, a Senior lawyer, Kemi Pinheiro, advocates abolition of the system of determining confessional statements in criminal and other trial matters in the country’s criminal justice system.
Pinheiro, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) also emphasized the need to amend ‘burden of proof’ in the ‘Evidence Act’, 2011 to reduce delay in criminal justice administration.
Pinheiro, who was the main lecturer at the summit held under the chairmanship of Honourable Justice Habeeb Abiru of the Court of Appeal, argued that ‘trial within trial’ system has no basis in the Evidence Act, and is one of the major causes of delay in criminal trials adding, “the system is a waste of judicial time and creates unnecessary burden on judges”.
Pinheiro said the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 is fraught with so much inadequacies that they are delaying justice delivery process and suggested a practice direction that would remove ‘trial within trial’ from judicial processes.
He said confessional statements alone cannot secure conviction and that so much time is being wasted on admissibility of ‘one document in ‘trial within trial’.
“We don’t operate a jury system. Why then are we still conducting ‘trial within trial’, “he queried.
“Trial within trial being foreign to our existing non-jury system law and having contributed immensely to the delay in justice delivery in criminal matters ought not to be conducted anymore in our legal system”, he said.
Dr Martins, who delivered a paper on “Achieving Justice for Victims of Crimes-The Imperatives of Restorative Justice” explained that the system involves making restitution for victims of crimes and communal sentencing for offenders.
Martins said the law made provision the Police to do restorative justice, instead of court trial, if victim of crime says he is no longer interested in prosecution but stressed that victims and offenders must agree to restitution which would be entered as consent judgment between them by the court.
 

Ololade Ige/Bakare Adekunbi
Public Affairs Officers
24/09/2019




Date: 23/09/2019

Lagos State Judiciary Celebrates 2019/2020 New Legal Year ! .

Lagos State Government has assured the judiciary of it's support and corporation of the executive to ensure the successful implementation of the reforms been initiated by the new Chief Judge, Justice Kazeem Alogba.

Governor Babjide Sanwo-Olu who gave the assurance said this has become imperative in order for the state judiciary to further consolidate it's "primus position of the Lagos Judiciary in the Federation".

The Governor who was represented by his deputy, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat  stated this yesterday in his address at the special service for the opening of the Lagos State Judiciary 2019/2020 legal year.

"The Judicial sector plays a critical role in ensuring low and order through the protection of rights of all citizens irrespective of status and stature"

"We will therefore work with you and do our utmost best to provide solutions to the challenges that may constitute obstacles to effective, efficient and impartial justice delivery in Lagos State"

The governor assured judiciary of the provision of new courts to facilitate access to and quick delivery of Justice.

"I have approved the completion of the combined High and Magistrate Courts in Ajah. In a few months time this multipurpose court would be completed and handed over to the Lagos State Judiciary".

In a remark, the Chief Judge, Justice Kazeem Alogba thanked the governor for the support stressing that the executive have been a pillar of support since it's assumption of office.

The Chief Judge who claimed to have held meeting with the Controller of Prison in the state, promised that judiciary under his watch would not contribute to prison congestion.

He promised to pursue community sentence and restorative justice.

He admonished Judges and Magistrate not to drift away from the part of righteousness, stressing that they should deliver judgement with the fear of God.
He also advised lawyers to present their cases with the fear of God, remanding them that it's what they present that Judges would use to determine cases.

"Temptation will come but if you hold on to God you will sumount all temptations"
The guest lecturers, Dr. Marufudeen Shittu and Imam Babatunde Alfa-Nla admonished Judges and Magistrates to research and pray for Allah's wisdom to be able to deliver justice with the fear of God.

They spoke on the topic "the concept of Justice in Islam citing the Holy Quran, Chapter 18 vs 24, Shittu admonishes legal practitioners against following their selfish interest, otherwise on the day of judgement they will found themselves in hell fire.

Alfa-Nla also stated that it was because that there was so much injustice that we have continue to seek justice.

He said Allah has commanded Judges to be just and fair in their dealings with other people and not just about themselves.

Ololade Ige/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
23/09/2019




Date: 21/08/2019

Justice Alogba Sworn-In As Lagos’ 17th Chief Judge.… Restates Commitment to Transformation of the Judiciary.

Following the ratification by National Judicial Council andconfirmation of the appointment of Hon. Justice Kazeem Olanrewaju Alogba as the17th Chief Judge of Lagos State by the State House of Assembly, Lagos StateGovernor Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Wednesday sworn-in the State’s new ChiefJudge who had been presiding over the affairs of the state judiciary in actingcapacity since June 13.

The event which took place at the Banquet Hall at Governor’sOffice in Alausa was well attended by the new cabinet members of the State,members of the State House of Assembly led by the Speaker, Rt. Hon. MudashirObasa, traditional rulers, legal luminaries among other distinguishedpersonalities.

While taking his oath of office, Justice Kazeem OlanrewajuAlogba pledged to sustain the independence of the judiciary and also to embarkon reform of the administration of justice system in the state.

The new Chief Judge said his tenure would witnesstransformation of judicial arm of government, promising to create what hedescribed as “smart judiciary”. This, he said, would be achieved by deployingtechnology tools that would enable the courts to dispense complicated cases ontime.

He said: “With a sense of responsibility, I stand before youall to accept the onerous tasks, which this office requires of me to perform. Iseek the guidance of Almighty Allah in carrying out those responsibilities ofthe office. In performing my duties, I shall key into the vision of theGovernor Sanwo-Olu administration in ensuring that we have smart judiciary byproviding first class judicial services in line with international bestpractice.

 “We will be deployingmore tools of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in the provisionof our services. In-video conferencing of court proceedings has already startedand we will be doing more in this area.”

Justice Alogba, an indigene of Ikorodu, said there would be“rigorous training” for judicial staff to enhance capacity, promising that hewould maintain zero tolerance for corruption within the arm of the government.

The Chief Judge, however, lamented the dearth of judges inthe state, pointing out that Lagos had 54 judges in its employment to dispenseon thousands of cases filed daily in courts. This situation, he said, was as aresult of paucity of fund.

Alogba praised Gov. Sanwo-Olu for what he described as“unique benevolence” towards the state’s judiciary, noting that the Governorhad been attending to the needs of the judicial arm of government since heassumed office.

The Chief Judge, however, pleaded with the governor toincrease funding of the state judiciary for improved service delivery.

Sanwo-Olu said his administration would strengthen thecordial relationship between the executive and the judiciary, without erodingimpartiality and independence the courts. The Governor pledged to support thejudiciary to enable it provide the needs of judicial officers and discouragethe people to recourse to self-help.

He said: “Your Lordship, I rejoice with you on this historicand momentous occasion, which will usher in a glorious chapter in the historyof Lagos State judiciary. I have no doubt that your tenure as the head ofjudicial arm would further consolidate and advance the course of justicedelivery for the benefit of those who seek redress in court.

 “The ultimate goal ofthe judicial reforms which our Chief Judge has been part of is the need toensure speedy delivery of justice to all parties irrespective of status. Thisis the only way to strengthen the confidence of our people in the justice system.

 “I wish to use thisopportunity to declare the total support of the executive arm. The objective toachieve a ‘Greater Lagos’ would not be possible without having impartial andindependent judicial arm of government.”

Sanwo-Olu described Alogba as a “plain judicial officer”,expressing confidence in the capacity of the Chief Judge to lead the statejudiciary.

The event was the first official function of the state’sAttorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo, SAN, whopresented Justice Alogba to the public.

Also at the event included the Ayangburen ofIkorodu, Oba Kabiru Sotobi, Ojora of Ijora Kingdom, Oba Fatai Ojora, andSekumade of Ipakodo, Oba Basiru Sotonwa.
Ololade Ige/Bakare Adekunbi
Public Affairs Officers
22/08/2019




Date: 20/08/2019

Lagos Assembly Confirms Hon. Justice Alogba as the Lagos Chief Judge.

The Lagos State House Of Assembly has confirmed the appointment of Hon. Justice Kazeem Olanrewaju Alogba as the 17th Chief Judge of Lagos State on Tuesday at the plenary.

The House had earlier on Monday read a letter from the Governor, Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu seeking his confirmation as the Chief Judge of the State.

The letter had posited Hon. Justice Alogba as the most senior of the 58 Honourable Justices in the State Judiciary and was appointed as the Acting Chief Judge from 11th of June, 2019.

His appointment was said to be based on merit, seniority and transparency in order to prevent a vacuum in the State judiciary due to the retirement of Hon. Justice Opeyemi Oke on June 10th, 2019.

During cross-examination, Hon. Alogba was asked questions relating to his field and he responded accordingly.

The Speaker, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa thereafter directed the Clerk of the House, Mr. Azeez Sanni to forward the letter of his confirmation to the Governor.


Ololade Ige/Bakare Adekunbi
Public Affairs Officers
20/08/2019




Date: 07/08/2019

I Never Instructed Magistrates To Refuse Protesters Bail - Lagos Chief Registrar.

The attention of the Lagos State Judiciary has been drawn to a news report in Sahara Reporters that the Chief Registrar has ordered Magistrates in the state not to grant bail to persons arraigned by police over Monday protest in Lagos.

We wish to state that there is no iota of truth in the report as no such instruction was given by the Chief Registrar.

We also wish to state that Magistrate Komolafe of Ebute Meta Magistrate Court in whose court some of the protesters were arraigned actually granted the defendants bail.

However, in line with generally known and established procedure, admission to bail by the court requires affected individuals to subsequently fulfill the conditions of bail for the bail to take full effect.This is purely at the instance of the defendants after the court has done its part and in this particular case, the defendants are in the process of complying with the bail conditions.

We reiterate that there was no instruction from the Chief Registrar to refuse them bail and employ media organisations to always verify their report to avoid misleading the public
Ololade Ige & Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Unit
07/08/2019




Date: 27/06/2019

Lagos Judiciary Holds Special Valedictory Court Session.

Lagos State Judiciary yesterday held a special Valedictory Court Session for the former Chief Judge of the state, Justice Opeyemi Oke.

The event which attracted stakeholders in the judiciary held at The Foyer, Lagos High Court, Igbosere and had in attendance Judges and Magistrates, legal practitioners including former Attorney General of the State, Adeniji Kazeem, the first lady silk, Chief (Mrs) Folake Solanke (SAN),first female Life Bencher, Mrs Hairat Balogun while the Body of Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) was represented by Mr Tunji Ayanlaja (SAN).

They all eulogised the former chief judge as ‘a jurist of positive change and first class reformer of administration of criminal justice administration’.

The acting Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Kazeem Alogba described Justice Oke as advocate of a positive change in the administration of justice.

Justice Alogba who read the citation of his predecessor described her as an achiever and a jurist with distinctive leadership qualities emphasizing that Justice Oke cherishes her oath of office and integrity.

Ayanlaja said those who appeared before Justice Oke would attest to the fact that “she was a judge per excellence”.

According to him, described the former Chief Judge of the state as one who had a hard stance for integrity adding that she had an infectious mannerisms which he said he retained till date.

“Justice Oke took to the bench as an analogue judge but retired as a digital judge; came in as a Christian but retired as a redeemed Christian; came in as a judge but left as a chief judge; came in as a mother but left as a grand-mother”, he stated.

Mrs Balogun said that as soon as she was appointed Chief Judge, that Oke carried out wide ranging reforms in the state judiciary more than her predecessors and for which she would continue to be remembered for.

She listed some of the reforms initiated by Justice Oke and urged the acting Chief Judge and staff of the state judiciary to be courageous in sustaining her legacies.

Chief Solanke remarked that despite her short tenure which was less than two years, Justice Oke recorded “very impressive performance”adding that that was why she made it a point of duty to come to Lagos to honour her yesterday at the special court session.

Solanke reeled out the achievements of the former Chief Judge and urged staff of the state judiciary to emulate her, particularly her anti-corruption fight.

The chairman of Ikorodu Branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Bayo Akinlade, who spoke on behalf of the five branches of NBA in Lagos state, said Justice Oke was ”bold and courageous” particularly on how she confronted corruption in the judiciary frontally.

”I am particularly impressed with the Mission Statement and Commitment Statement” she introduced which he noted gave a new direction to services of the judiciary in the state.

Justice Oke, in her response, thanked the judges,magistrates and staff of the judiciary for their love and support for all the reforms initiated and making her tenure a success.

“I want to appeal to you to continue in your support of our policies which are all geared towards delivering speedy and efficient justice to the good people of Lagos State who we serve”, she said.
Ololade Ige/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
28/06/2019




Date: 13/06/2019

Gov Sanwoolu Swears in New Acting Chief Judge.

Lagos State Governor Mr.Babajide Sanwo-Olu has said that the Executive will work with the State judiciary and the Federal Government to find a lasting solution to prison congestion, saying that the issue has become be a major challenge to the State's justice system.

Governor Sanwo-Olu stated thison Thursday after swearing in the new acting Chief Judge of Lagos State,Honourable Justice Kazeem Alogba.

According to the Governor,"the current situation where over 70 percent of inmates in our prisons constitute awaiting trials is not acceptable as it is not a reflection of an efficient justice delivery system. We will also not hesitate to do whatever is required to sustain the ongoing reform in the judicial sector so the desired result of ensuring that the wheel of justice rolls as fast as it could, will be achieved."

The Governor further stated that his administration will embark on the review of the State's judiciary,noting that the three arms of government must form a synergy for the development of the State. He also promised to continue with judicial reforms in the State.

‘‘We are all partners in progress. We must continue to work together to deliver the good for the teeming Lagos populace. This is what governance is all about.'' Sanwo-Olu said.

While congratulating the new acting Chief Judge, Governor Sanwo-Olu expressed confidence in his capacity to continue on the path of progress that has been created in the State judiciary since the beginning of the fourth republic.

''I have absolute confidence in your ability and capacity to sustain and improve on the enviable reputation which the Lagos State Judiciary has built for itself over the years,particularly since 1999 under the administration of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.During the tenure of that administration, a solid foundation was laid through the introduction and implementation of critical reforms and initiatives that are aimed at building a judicial system that is efficient, reliable and courageous to uphold the fundamental principles and ideals of equity, fairness, natural justice and the rule of law.''

In his vote of assurance,Justice Alogba, who thanked the Governor for the honour, promised to exercise the powers of his office conscientiously for the good of the common man and the furtherance of the administration of justice in Lagos State.

The new Acting Chief Judges uggested that traffic and environmental offenders should henceforth serve their sentences at the point where the offenses are committed. He said no one likes to wear a toga of an ex-convict so community service or some other forms of punishment should be handed to offenders at the point of contravention.

Justice Alogba also promised speedy and effective dispensation of justice, zero tolerance for corruption and corrupt tendencies, rigorous, adequate and continuous training of judicial staff as well as improvement on the use of ICT for the delivery of justice.

“We will pursue the use of information communication technology and dwell on staff welfare. We pledge our support for the new administration.’’ Alogba said.


Ololade Ige:/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
13/06/2019




Date: 11/06/2019

Appointment of Honourable Justice Kazeem O. Alogba as the acting Chief Judge of Lagos State.

Honourable Justice Kazeem O. Alogba has been appointed as the acting Chief Judge of Lagos State

In accordance with Section 271 (1) and (4) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (As amended), His Excellency Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu,Governor of Lagos State has appointed Honourable Justice Kazeem O. Alogba as the 17th Chief Judge of Lagos State with effect from Tuesday 11th June 2019, in acting capacity, pending the recommendation of the National Judicial Council (NJC) and subsequent confirmation of the State House of Assembly.

 

The appointment of the new Acting Chief Judge is consequent upon the need to prevent a vacuum in the State Judiciary, given the imminent retirement of the present Chief Judge of Lagos State, Honourable Justice Opeyemi Oke, who is set to disengage statutorily from the State Judiciary from today Monday 10 June 2019. Accordingly, the newly appointed Acting Chief Judge will be sworn-in on Thursday 13th June 2019 in the Governor’s Office, Lagos House, Alausa Ikeja at 10.00 a.m.

 

Prior to his appointment Justice Kazeem Alogba was the most senior of the 58 Honourable Justices in the State Judiciary next to the out-going Chief Judge, and had chaired the Committee on the review of the High Court Civil Procedure Rules, which culminated in the new High Court of Lagos(Civil Procedure) Rules of 2019 that came into force on 31 January 2019.

 

The new Acting Chief Judge is hereby wished a most impactful tenure of Office.

 

 


Ololade Ige/Adekunbi Bakare
Public Affairs Officers
11/06/2019




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Date: 28/04/2020

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Date: 05/03/2020

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Date: 06/02/2020

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Date: 17/12/2019

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Date: 25/11/2019

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Date: 10/10/2019

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Date: 24/09/2019

Alogba Decries Congested State of Nigerian Prisons.

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Date: 20/08/2019

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Date: 07/08/2019

I Never Instructed Magistrates To Refuse Protesters Bail - Lagos Chief Registrar.

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Date: 27/06/2019

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Date: 13/06/2019

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Date: 11/06/2019

Appointment of Honourable Justice Kazeem O. Alogba as the acting Chief Judge of Lagos State.

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