Judges in Nigeria have been barred from uploading pictures of their personal activities on social media platforms, by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Walter Onnoghen.
The announcement was made on Monday by the CJN who spoke at the opening ceremony of the 2018 Induction Course for newly appointed Judges and Kadis, held at the National Judicial Institute, NJI, in Abuja. According to him, it was wrong for judicial officers to discuss matters of public interest on the internet.
According to Justice Onnoghen, “As Judicial Officers, you must refrain from matters of public interest on the internet and social media.“You must also desist from uploading pictures of your personal activities online. In the light of the aforesaid, caution is obviously the operative word”.
He said: “At this juncture, let me hasten to admonish your lordships to always be punctual to court sittings. You must be an exemplary Judge and also be seen as manifesting the enviable virtues of the judiciary. This will in turn improve judicial practice as well as contribute to fleshing out what judicial virtues consist of.“It is apt to mention that technology continues to match inexorably onward in today’s society. As a result, those within the legal community and judges in particular have no choice but to deploy ICT tools in the discharge of their duties.“This will definitely aid in managing the pace of cases in courts”, the CJN added.
“Do not make yourselves available to be used as a scapegoat by politicians or anybody because when the chips are down, you know will have yourself to blame.“You should therefore avoid anything that will bring disrepute to the judiciary. Let integrity be your watchword. Be bold and courageous. When you are guided by judicial precedents and the law, you can never go wrong. Even if you go wrong, that is why the Court of Appeal is there”, the CJN added.