Following series of criticisms on its earlier refusal to confirm Justice Akon Ikpeme as chief judge of tbe state, the Cross River State House of Assembly on Thursday ,confirmed Justice Ikpeme as the substantive chief judge of the state.
Spokesperson to Eteng Jones, the Speaker of the Assembly,the spokesperson to the Speaker of the Assembly, broke the news in a Facebook post, Thursday morning.
Speaking to newsmen about the confirmation Thursday afternoon, Efa Esua, the member representing Calabar Municipality State Constituency, said “It was a unanimous decision, we didn’t give room for voting.
When asked why the House made a u-turn on the matter, the lawmaker simply said, “It means that the first time we didn’t do it right. So, having seen that there was an error, we needed to correct it”.
Cross River State had been without a substantive chief judge since early 2020 after Mrs Ikpeme, the most senior judge in the state who ought to have been appointed into the position, in accordance with the Nigerian Constitution and legal tradition, was disqualified by the assembly allegedly because of her family ties with neighbouring Akwa Ibom State.
Though Mrs Ikpeme is of Akwa Ibom parentage. She was born in Calabar, Cross River, when Akwa Ibom was a part of Cross River. She got married to a man from Cross River, and has been working for decades as a judicial officer, including being a director of public prosecution.