The Senate on Wednesday unanimously confirmed Justice Walter Onnoghen’s nomination as Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) after over one hour question and answer session in a plenary session.
If inaugurated by the President, Onnoghen will become the 15th CJN after independence.
The confirmation hearing started by 11.45am and ended by 1pm.
What followed was a mild protest by some senators who claimed that they wanted to ask Onnoghen some questions bothering their minds.
But many Senators felt that Onnoghen discharged himself creditably by answering questions frankly.
Onnoghen said that setting up special courts to handle corruption cases may not necessarily be the solution to delay in trial of corruption matters.
He blamed the delay on shabby investigation and prosecution. He said that there should be proper investigation before bringing a case to court.
Onnoghen added that it takes three to ensure speedy trial and conclusion of corruption cases.
He named the three as investigation, prosecution and the judge.
On the way out of conflicting rulings, he said: “Some of you (Senators) know that your cases stop at the Court of Appeal, but you still bring them to the Supreme Court.”
He told the Senate that a new rule is coming that would compel lawyers to bear the cost of litigation for failing to advise their clients properly.
The Senate erupted when Onnoghen pointedly told the lawmakers that they were the cause of conflicting rulings by judges.
When the mild row subsided, Senate President asked whether Onnoghen would be allowed to take a bow and go.
The senators chorused in the affirmative and he nomination was subsequently confirmed.