Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State has ordered the sack of 30 magistrates who protested against the non-payment of their 24-month salaries.
In a letter signed on behalf of the acting chief judge of the state, Eyo Effiom Ita by Chief Registrar Edem N. Okokon, it was stated that since the state was unable to pay them from their engagement date on February 2019, they had been withdrawn from sitting in any court till further notice.
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The acting chief judge, whose tenures expires next week, also asked the 30 magistrates to stay at home, alleging that many of them had been involved in corrupt practices to survive.
Last week, the magistrates protested in front of the old governor’s office for three days.
Findings revealed that the state government had advertised for the positions of magistrates, after which they were engaged and reportedly sent for training at government’s expense. However, the governor was quoted to have denied knowledge of their engagement and allegedly refused to ratify it.
The chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association in Calabar, Paul Ebiala, said the over 1,000 judgements delivered by the magistrates would become null and void since they were not properly engaged.