Makinde is being urged by a Muslim group to compensate the families of late lawyers

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Makinde is being urged by a Muslim group to compensate the families of late lawyers who were denied judgeships.

On Thursday, the Political Awareness Group urged the Oyo State Government to honor three Muslim attorneys who were nominated as high court judges but died when Governor Seyi Makinde blocked their confirmation.

Dr. Moruf Yusuf, Vice-Chairman of PAG, an Association of Muslim Professionals and Technocrats for Good Governance, made the appeal during a news conference at Ibadan’s Secretariat, Ososami.

The attorneys’ names were Alhaja Fatima Badirudeen, Mr. Wasiu Adetunji Gbadegesin, and Mr. AbdulRasaq Bolaji Agoro, according to him.
Apart from immortalizing them for depriving them of the prestigious advancement from the bar to the bench, Dr Yusuf believes their families should be appropriately paid, and the Muslim Ummah should be consoled by the Oyo State Government.“It’s terrible to think that the three Judges-denied had finally, and miraculously, given up the ghost. Fatimo passed away in December 2020, Gbadegesin in April 2021, and Bolaji in July 2021. Is being a Muslim a capital offense in Oyo State, Makinde? Now that they’ve all died, it’ll be critical to immortalize them, recompense their families, and offer condolences to the Muslims of Oyo State.”

Dr Yusuf explained that the state had introduced an examination for the first time to fill the three vacant positions of judges of the high court, with a cut-off mark of 70%, and it was agreed that the most qualified applicant in each of the State Judiciary, Ministry of Justice, and Nigeria Bar Association, NBA would be selected.

“Around mid-year 2019, the Government of Oyo State was recommended to nominate three more eligible people to fill the empty position of Judges of the State’s High Courts. As a result, the State Judicial Service Commission sought applications from adequately competent legal practitioners, and 36 lawyers applied. As requested by the then Attorney General of the State, Professor Oyewo, the Commission, chaired by the Chief Judge of the State, conducted a thorough examination for the applicants (first of its kind in the history of the State) in order to meritoriously select the most creditable three of the applicants. The Commission also decided to choose the best competent applicant from each of the State Judiciary, Ministry of Justice, and NBA.”

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He said that out of the 36 candidates, Alhaja Badirudeen, Mr. Wasiu Gbadegesin, and Mr. Agoro were the first to be approved by the State Judiciary, Ministry of Justice, and NBA, and questioned why their confirmation by the National Judicial Council was halted by the state government.

“Alhaja Fatima Badirudeen (of blessed memory) was not only a qualified candidate and lawyer with a score of well over 70%, but she was also the State’s Chief Registrar. As a result, she was chosen as one of the three Judges-nominees from the Judiciary. Mr. Wasiu Adetunji Gbadegesin (of blessed memory) was not only a successful applicant and lawyer with a score of well over 70%, but he was also the Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary of the Oyo State Ministry of Justice. As a result, he was chosen as one of the three Judges-nominees from the Ministry. Mr. AbdulRasaq Bolaji Agoro (of blessed memory) has a wide range of abilities. He received a score of well over 80%. He was a wise elder who was also a member of the NBA’s Ibadan Branch. As a result, he was chosen as one of the three Judges who would never be by the Commission from the Nigerian Bar Association. The three successful Judges-nominees were all Muslims, by chance.

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“The Commission forwarded the list of three Judges-nominees to the National Judicial Council for its recommendation to Governor Oluseyi Makinde for appointment as Judges, as provided for in Section 271 (2) of the Constitution. Surprisingly, the then-Attorney General of Oyo State, Prof. Oyewo, petitioned for the list to be removed on the Governor’s orders. Why? The Governor has yet to respond to this query. Prof. Oyewo, on the other hand, justified his behavior by claiming that the duo of Fatimo Badirudeen and Wasiu Gbadegesin, who climbed through the ranks of their cadre to the top, were from the same Oyo community, and that the three Judges-nominee were Muslims. Is it a hardship to be a Muslim?”

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