CROSS RIVER, Nigeria – The State Acting Chief Judge, Hon Justice Eyo Efiom Ita has ordered the 29 Protesting Magistrates in the state to vacate their sits in various courts in the state pending the resolution of the matter involving their two years salary.
In a statement titled ‘Withdrawal from sitting in Court’ issued by the Registrar, Edem N. Okokon, the Acting Chief Judge regretted the inability of the state government to pay the magistrate’s salaries since their appointment in February 2019/
“I have the directive of the Lordship of the Hon Acting Chief Judge of Cross River State Hon Justice Eyo Efiom Ita to inform you that in view of the State Government inability to pay your salary since your appointment in February 2019, you are hereby withdrawn from sitting in court till further notice”
The statement said the continuous stay in court of the magistrates would be exposing them to corrupt practices, “There is no conscientious reason to have allowed you work without pay for all this while as you may be tempted to fall into corrupt practice in order to serve
“There are in fact, a handful of reports already received against some of such magistrates hence this directive. Accordingly, you are advised to stay at home until the issue of your salaries is settled. We regret every inconvenience this may cause you but it is necessary for the interest of our Judiciary” the statement added.