Ade Adesomoju, Abuja

Some of the special anti-corruption courts designated to handle exclusively corruption and other financial crime cases have started functioning, Saturday PUNCH has learnt.

The Corruption Financial Crimes Cases Trials Monitoring Committee, set up by the National Judicial Council to monitor the corruption cases, has also started work.

Saturday PUNCH learnt on Friday that the COTRIMCO, led by a retired Justice of the Supreme Court, Suleiman Galadima, met with a total of 26 judges handling corruption cases in various courts in Lagos earlier in the week.

The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen, had in September 2017, directed the heads of various courts to designate some courts to exclusively handle corruption and financial crime cases.

He also announced that the National Judicial Council would set up the COTRIMCO to monitor such cases.

The COTRIMCO, since its inauguration on November 1, 2017, has received details of over 2,300 corruption cases across the country.

As part of its duties, the COTRIMCO has embarked on meetings with judges handling corruption cases.

According to sources familiar with the committee’s visit to Lagos, COTRIMCO met with a total of 26 judges from the Lagos High Court, the Federal High Court and the Court of Appeal on separate days between Monday and Wednesday.

Among the 26 were seven judges of the Lagos State High Court; 11 judges of the Federal High Court; and eight were Justices of the Court of Appeal.

The Lagos High Court judges who met with the committee were Justices Mojisola Dada, O.A. Williams, S.O. Nwaka, S.O. Solebo, O. Oshodi, and Lateefa Okunnu.

The judges of the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court were Justices Mojisola Olatoregun, Abdulazeez Anka, R.M. Ajikawa, Babs Kuewumi, Muslim Hassan, Ibrahim Buba, A.O. Faji, O.O. Oguntoyinbo, Hadiza Shagari, and C.A. Obiozor.

Justices of the Lagos Division of the Court of Appeal who met separately with the COTRIMCO members were Justices Jamilu Tukur, Ugochukwu Ogakwo, B.O Georgewill, A.O. Obaseki-Adejumo, Tijani Abubaka, Joseph Ikyegh, and Yargata Nimpar.

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