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SWEARING-IN OF THE HIGH COURT JUDG

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Text of the Address by His Excellency, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, CON
Governor, Ekiti State, Nigeria on the occasion of the SWEARING-IN OF THE HIGH COURT JUDGE at
Conference Hall, Governor’s Office, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State

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SWEARING-IN OF THE HIGH COURT JUDG

  1. 1. Page 1 of 5 Text of the Address by His Excellency Dr. Kayode Fayemi, CON Governor, Ekiti State, Nigeria on the occasion of the SWEARING-IN OF THE HIGH COURT JUDGE at Conference Hall, Governor’s Office, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State Tuesday January 19, 2021 Protocols Good morning and Happy New Year to you all! 2. This is my first meeting with the Ekiti State legal fraternity this year, it is appropriate for me to wish each of you and your families a blessed 2021. I have no doubt that 2021 will be a consequential year for all of us. 3. May I also use this opportunity to express my profound gratitude to My Lord, the Chief Judge, the judges of the State High Court, the Magistracy, State Counsel in the Ministry of Justice and all those who work in the justice sector in the state for the outstanding hard work done last year in upholding the rule of law
  2. 2. Page 2 of 5 and administering justice in our state, even in the face of the COVID 19 pandemic and the EndSARS protests. 4. Today’s occasion affirms an essential cornerstone of my administration’s theme ‘reclaiming our land and restoring our values’. At every opportunity in words and deeds we have tried to show that this is not simply a slogan. It is a call to make come true those essential values that are core to Ekiti Kete. I am referring to the values of hard work, decency, integrity and not in the least the value that places competence above mediocrity especially in making appointments to leadership positions in the public service. 5. As I believe is already clear to everyone here, this is one appointment that was well made. I have been pleased at the broad consensus that Adeniyi Familoni is well placed to assume the mantle of a judge of the Ekiti State High Court. His appointment is another step forward in a remarkable career that has seen him repeatedly excel in new roles, recognised by awards, promotion, and prestigious appointments. I have no hesitation in saying that he will be a tremendous asset to the High Court of Ekiti State and I wish him the very best for what I am sure will be a long and very distinguished career on the Bench. 6. My Lord, may I also use this occasion to share my thoughts on the future of the Judiciary in the state. The important place of the Judiciary in determining much of our socio- economic and political
  3. 3. Page 3 of 5 development as a nation requires us to reimagine the state of the judiciary in Ekiti State. The superior courts in Nigeria have assumed a prominent status in this regard. I have often heard it said that it is time Ekiti State takes up it place of pride in the superior courts of Nigeria. This sentiment is often accompanied by frequent reference to the era of Ekiti Justices in the Supreme Court. Honourable Justices Micheal Ogundare and Olajide Olatawura of blessed memories whose presence on the Supreme Court bench brought much pride to us. 7. I have accepted these comments in good faith. My administration is committed to supporting the elevation of judges in our state high court. Directly related to this must now be a conversation on the desirability of ensuring that qualified young lawyers are given the opportunity to be appointed to the bench. It may now be desirable to revisit the age of appointment to the bench. I am aware that in a number of states efforts are made to target suitable candidates under the age of 40. 8. No less important is the need for female judges in the high court of Ekiti State. My administration firmly believes in the desirability of enabling appropriate environment for the appointment of women to decision-making positions. Our current situation cannot be said to be satisfactory and I hope My Lord the Chief Judge will agree with me on the need to ensure that
  4. 4. Page 4 of 5 qualified female lawyers are given the space to aspire to the bench of the high court of Ekiti State. 9. I make these proposals without prejudice to the need to ensure that we continuously put our best forward in making judiciary appointments. It also follows that if we are to continue attracting the best people to join the ranks of the judiciary, then we must make judicial appointment as attractive as possible. To that end, government is determined to get the conditions of service of judicial officers right. 10. Improving workplace environment, facilitating interventions that promote and protect the health of judicial officers and supporting continuous legal education are some of our areas of intervention this year. I am aware that most of the vehicles being used by judicial officers were bought during my first term in office. I am able to announce that arrangements are currently being made to purchase new cars for the judiciary. 11. I should also mention that following the approval by the State Executive Council of a set of proposals for reforming the judicial pension scheme, the House of Assembly has passed the Pension Rights of Ekiti State Judicial Officers Bill, 2020 into Law. The Law will transfer the responsibility for the administration and payment
  5. 5. Page 5 of 5 of pension of any Judicial Officer to Ekiti State Judicial Service Commission. 12. It now remains for me to formally welcome Honourable Justice Adeniyi Familoni to the High Court of Ekiti State. It is my prayer that he will share our vision of a judiciary that will provide fair and impartial justice for all regardless of gender, economic status or any other attribute. I thank you all for listening Dr. Kayode Fayemi, CON Governor

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