• en

FCT Minister Wike Announces N37bn Funding for Abuja Appeal Court Complex Construction

FCT Minister Nyesom Wike has announced that President Tinubu has approved N30 billion for the Abuja Appeal Court Complex.

Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister, Nyesom Wike, has disclosed that N30 billion out of the N37 billion projected cost has been approved by President Bola Tinubu in the 2024 budget for the construction of the Abuja Division of the Appeal Court Complex.

 He disclosed this on Wednesday, at the ground breaking ceremony of the complex by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Olukayode Ariwoola at Dakibiyu, Abuja.

He also presented the property’s certificate of occupancy to the President Court of Appeal, Justice Monica Dongban-Memsem.

Wike said the project would be inaugurated by September next year to coincide with the legal year.

“This is one project that I have seen that is well covered in the budget. This project will cost us N37 billion but in the budget Mr. President has provided N30 billion.

“The contractor has nothing to worry. So, the AGF, you know I will not be party to a contract for the sake of awarding. By September next year when we have the next legal year it will be ready. It is a contract that was given to the contractor to do in 16 months but he has promised me that with available funds, he can finish it in 13 months or one year. So prepare yourself that we do our legal year in this division,” Wike said.

He thanked the CJN, saying it was during his time that there would be a full structure for the Court of Appeal Division, Abuja.

The scope of the work on a five-storey building, according to the Executive Secretary Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), Shehu Ahmad, consists of the construction of 10 courts and 10 suites for the justices, administrative offices for the registrar and support staff, file rooms for storage of case documents, conveniences and recess areas for the justices all to be provided within the immediate proximity of the courts.

The FCT Minister reiterated that Tinubu, who was concerned that judicial officials retire into rented houses after service, has approved 40 houses to be built for judicial officers so that they can carry out their duties comfortably.

“What Mr. President has done, I want to inform you, that we should provide accommodation-10 for the Court of Appeal, 10 for the Federal High Court and 20 for the FCT Court. I believe by August, we will lay the foundation The President has approved that the heads of court must have their retirement home. He has approved that the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, the Chief Judge of the FCT, the President of the Federal Industrial Court and the President of Federal Court of Appeal must have their retirement homes.

“I want to assure you that the foundation of these homes will be laid in August and before September next year, you will all have your keys to your houses,” Wike assured.

He stressed that the President had also approved more court rooms to be provided for the magistrates, in Maitama, Asokoro and Garki Districts before the next legal year.

In his remarks, Justice Ariwoola appealed that the judiciary must be allowed to function to perform its role unhindered, as much as possible, saying, “Once you take care of the judiciary, you have taken care of justice.

“If you cry for peace anywhere in the world without justice, that can be no peace. We guarantee peace, we promise to ensure that peace is given to whoever is due, so that we can all enjoy peace. Justice is important and imperative. We promise we will always give justice,” he said.

 He also lauded Wike saying it was not only the Court of Appeal that would benefit from his legacy, but the heads of various courts and the other courts.

“I understand you had mentioned it that not even apex court will be forgotten. My board of justices of the Supreme Court are not here, but they said I should pass it on to the honorable minister of the FCT, that we don’t have another place to go to other than the FCT.

“So we believe that your administration and the administration of your boss, the head of government, will not forget about the apex court in the legacy being given to the judiciary.

“We appreciate Mr. President, and through, the Attorney General, and yourself as the FCT Minister, we wish to convey our sincere appreciation and gratitude to Mr. President for all the things he has been doing and for the promises, we shall not disappoint, we shall not let you down,” he said.

Also the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi, commended Wike for his exceptional and unique service to the legal community, particularly the judiciary.

Olawale Ajimotokan

Follow us on: