Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State, on Tuesday, swore in Hon. Justice Afojulu Raymond Ozoemena as the substantive Chief Judge of the state after he functioned as Acting Chief Judge for 3 months on two successive occasions.
Hon. Justice Ozoemena’s visit to acting capability by Gov. Ugwuanyi was follow up to the retirement of the previous Chief Judge, Hon. Justice Priscilla Ngozi Emehelu, who obtained the constitutionally prescribed retirement age of 65 years on September 7, 2021.
The governor discussed that the decision to swear in Hon. Justice Ozoemena as Acting Chief Judge of Enugu State on September 7, 2021 and the renewal of the appointment on December 8, 2021 upon the expiration of the first 3 months, was based upon the order of seniority of the Judges of Enugu High Court as validated by the National Judicial Council (NJC).
Swearing in Hon. Justice Ozoemena as the Chief Judge of Enugu State, at the EXCO Chamber of the Government House, Enugu, on Tuesday, Gov. Ugwuanyi divulged that the function was sequel to the recommendation by the National Judicial Council (NJC) and subsequent confirmation of his appointment by the Enugu State House of Assembly, in fulfillment of the arrangements of Section 271 Sub-section 1 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
Mentioning that he swore in Hon. Justice Ozoemena as the Chief Judge of Enugu State after all the conditions precedent for the appointment was dutifully fulfilled, Gov. Ugwuanyi, who described the workout as “God’s will, made manifest at God’s own time”, congratulated the newly sworn in Chief Judge.
The guv explained the Hon. Justice Ozoemena is incomparably received the task, expressing self-confidence that “you will bring your juristic erudition, diverse experience and integrity to bear upon the administration of the Enugu State Judiciary”.
“I wish you well and pray to God to approve you an excellent career as the Chief Judge of Enugu State”, Gov. Ugwuanyi included.
Responding, the brand-new Chief Judge of Enugu State, Hon. Justice Ozoemena, thanked Gov. Ugwuanyi for his endurance and consistency in making sure that he was sworn in as Acting Chief Judge for two consecutive times and thereafter as the substantive Chief Judge of the State.
He for that reason guaranteed the governor of the cooperation and assistance of the State Judiciary under his watch, stressing that they will keep the pace of peace and unified relationship that exist in between the Executive and the Judiciary in the state.
The event was seen by the President, Enugu State Customary Court of Appeal, Hon. Justice George Nnamani; former Minister of Information and immediate past President General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief John Nnia Nwodo; Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Simon Uchenna Ortuanya; the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Rt. Hon. Dr. Festus Uzor; the Deputy Chief of Staff to the Governor, Prof. Malachy Okwueze; the State Attorney-General, Chief Miletus Eze; other members of the State Executive Council (EXCO); Special Advisers to the Governor; Judges of the State Judiciary and members of the State Judicial Service Commission, to name a few.