President Jonathan submitted her name to the Senate for approval last week, but her appointment was confirmed yesterday by the Senate.
Confirming the appointment of Justice Mukhtar after a screening session, Senate President David Mark said it was the hope of the Senate that the new Chief Justice would be able to “improve the public perception of the judiciary and also to ensure that there is steady dispensation of justice.”
“We can only pray that Justice Mukhtar will improve on the condition in which she found the judiciary at the moment. We will work together with the judiciary and the executive arm of government to ensure that there is justice, equity, and fairness and there is progress and discipline in the country.”
Justice Mukhtar had during the screening promised to reposition the judiciary and deal with the “bad eggs giving the judiciary a negative image” in order to regain the trust of Nigerians.
Justice Mukhtar has been a trailblazer for women on the Bench in many respects. When she was appointed to the Supreme Court in 2005, she was the first female jurist to be appointed to the highest court in Nigeria.
Justice Muktar had also earlier made history as the first woman to be appointed into Appeal Court, Nigeria’s second highest court. Ironically, it was gathered Justice Muktar was nominated by the Kano State government to the appellate court in 1987 to pave way for a male appointee.
The incoming CJN who was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1967, a year after she was called to the English Bar is also the first female lawyer in the Northern part of the country. Legal practitioners and colleagues described her as independent minded.
She graduated from Gibson and Welder college in law in 1966 and was subsequently called to the English Bar in absentia. She was called to the Bar on June 26, 1967.
Justice Mukhtar, 68 will replace Justice Dahiru Musdapher who retires as the CJN on 15 of July.
If there is any sector of the country that needs a revamp in Nigeria, it is the Justice system. It is hoped that with the appointment of the new Chief Justice, necessary changes would be made to improve the credibility of the Nigerian Justice System.
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News Source: Leadership