Chiemeka ADINDU, Calabar
As Justice Akon Bassey Ikpeme assumes duty as the substantive Chief Judge of Cross River State following her swearing in by the state governor yesterday, a group under the umbrella of Odukpani Leadership Academy has joined the host of innumerable Cross Riverians to congratulate her for a well deserved appointment.
They expressed confidence in her and were optimistic that the Cross River state judiciary will be reformed and revived to compete with global best practices. They said the appointment was a timely divine intervention. They described her as a legal luminary with proven track records which has endeared her to all.
In a release signed by chairman of the group, Kingsley Ikpeme and the secretary, Barr. E. E. Esu and disclosed to TNN, they believed that Justice Ikpeme is a woman of destiny following the intrigues that played out before her confirmation and swearing in as the chief judge of the state.
The release which was titled: ‘Justice prevailed at last’ reads thus: On behalf of the exco and entire members of Odukpani Leadership Academy (an assemblage of past student and youth leaders of Odukpani extraction), we join your family, well-wishers and indeed the entire people of Cross River State to felicitate with you on the occasion of your appointment and subsequent swearing in as the Chief Judge of Cross River State in line with the extant provision of section 271 (1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (As Amended).
“My Lord, the academy followed with keen interests the events/intrigues that finally led to your swearing in as the substantive CJ of the state and we have no doubt in our hearts that, you are, indeed, a woman of great destiny and calling.
“As you man the hallowed office of the CJ of Cross River State, we are most optimistic that you will bring your wealth of sound legal knowledge and seasoned administrative acumen to bear in the effective discharge of your duties/functions as the CJ of CRS.
“My Lord, the myriads of encomiums showered on you at your swearing in are testaments to the fact that CRS is blessed to have you man the sacred office of the Chief Judge.
“As you assume the office, accept the assurances of our unalloyed support and cooperation throughout your tenure as the CJ of CRS.
“Once again, congratulations My Lord!”
Similarly, Chairman of the Odukpani Leadership Academy, Comrade Kingsley Ikpeme in his speech made in a well attended reception which took place at the private Residence of the CJ in Calabar poured encomiums on Justice Ikpeme. He commended her for being a model for the women folk, he said her unique qualities make her to stand out.
The chairman added that the hope of the common man has further been rekindled as the Judiciary is the last hope of the common man. He called on the CJ to ensure that justice will reign supreme throughout her tenure irrespective of affiliations.