The Gombe State Governor, Muhammadu Yahaya, on Friday, performed the swearing-in of the new Chief Judge of the state, Justice Joseph Awak, as the third substantive Chief Judge of the state at the Government House.
Yahaya, after the swearing-in, said his administration would continue to support the Judiciary and Legislature in discharging their statutory responsibilities effectively for the overall benefit of the people of Gombe State.
Awak was elevated on acting capacity on January 2, 2022, after the retirement of Justice Mua’zu Pindiga who acted till he attained the statutory age in office.
Yahaya said since inception, the three arms of government had been partnering in the development of Gombe State, stressing that the unity and harmony must be maintained going forward.
“To facilitate the proper functioning of the judicial arm of government, our administration has placed emphasis on having a harmonious working relationship with the judiciary,” he said.
While restating his commitment to continue supporting the independence of the judiciary in Gombe State for the enhancement of service delivery and speedy administration of justice, Governor Inuwa assured the entire members of the judiciary that he would continue to make available all necessary facilities and funding for the discharge of the statutory responsibilities of the arm.
“The myriad of challenges facing our dear nation cannot be tamed without ensuring swift, sure, and fair administration of justice. It, therefore, goes without saying that we require an incorruptible judiciary where justice shall be dispensed to all manner of people in the state without discrimination, fear or favour.”
He congratulated the new judiciary helmsman for being found worthy to superintend over the important arm of government.
“First and foremost, our gratitude goes to Allah for giving us the opportunity to witness this important occasion of the swearing-in of the substantive Chief Judge of Gombe State. It is, indeed, a joyful and historic moment seeing you cheerfully taking the Oath of Office. Constitutionally, you are now the head of the judiciary arm of government in the state.”
“Following the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission on the March 16, 2022, as required by the Constitution, I approved the appointment of Justice Joseph A. Awak as the substantive Head of the State High Court of Justice as ratified by the Honourable members of the Gombe State House of Assembly,” Yahaya added.
He described Justice Awak as a man well known for his sterling qualities befitting of a top-ranking judicial officer, whose appointment as the Chief Judge of the state was a culmination of many years of meritorious and selfless service to the judicial arm of government, not just in Gombe State, but also the federation as a whole.
Yahaya said, “I have no doubt in my mind that Justice Awak will discharge his duties in this new role with utmost commitment and integrity as he has always done for the benefit of our dear state.
“The importance of having judicial officers with high levels of experience and moral rectitude at this moment of our history cannot be over emphasised. It is undeniable that unbridled corruption, violent crimes and numerous other forms of criminal behaviours have bedevilled our nation, making it extremely difficult, if not completely impossible, to meet our developmental aspirations and consolidate our constitutional democracy.”
Speaking earlier, the Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Ibrahim Njodi, described the occasion as unique in the history of the present administration with the third Chief Judge being sworn in for the High Court of Justice by Governor Yahaya, two in acting capacity and today’s in substantive capacity.
He noted that the development will assist in the administration of justice in the state and, therefore, congratulated Justice Awak on his well-deserved appointment as the head of the judiciary arm of government in Gombe State.
Chief Judge Awak, on his part, lauded the governor for the confidence reposed in him, while assuring that both arms would enjoy improved relationship.