Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike has warned that if the State chapter of Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) fails to call of its strike by the end of this month, the government would have no option but to implement the prevailing law on no-work, no-pay.
He has reiterated that there was no basis for the State chapter of JUSUN to have joined the protracted national strike as the issues in contention do not apply at all to the State where judiciary enjoy financial autonomy and much improved staff welfare.
Governor Wike stated these in his farewell speech at the special court session in honour of the retiring Chief Judge of Rivers State, Hon. Justice Adama Iyayi-Lamikanra, in Port Harcourt.
‘We would, therefore, neither set up any new implementation Committee because it’s simply unnecessary, nor allow the state’s judiciary to submit its budget directly to the State House of Assembly in breach of extant fiscal policies and regulations that regulate the State’s budgeting process,’ he said.
He explained that the State is not unaware of the so-called agreement among the Federal Government, the Governors Forum and JUSUN on the implementation of financial autonomy for the judiciary and legislative branches across the country.
Governor Wike took a swipe at the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) for instigating unnecessary tension in the State over the appointment of a Chief Judge. He also castigated International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) for making misguided noises on gender equality because a woman was not recommended by the National Judicial Council to succeed Justice Adama Iyayi-Lamikanra.
The governor maintained that in the appointment of an Acting Chief judge, the most senior judge in the hierarchy is an absolute condition. But that is not the same in the appointment of a substantive chief.
The Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) had on April 6 2021 embarked on an indefinite strike to press home its demand for implementation of full Financial autonomy for the judiciary.