Governor Darius Ishaku has said the state is blessed with eminent jurists who have done the state proud, especially the outgoing Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Mahmud Mohammed.
Ishaku said that Justice Mohammed has not only creditably discharged his duties well but has become a profound reference point in jurisprudence.
Justice Mohammed equally said the governor is the very soul of transparency, balance and accommodation.
The governor, in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs, Emmanuel Bello, paid further tributes to the eminent jurist.
He said: “Justice Mohammed is a true Taraba hero and a man we have no proper words to describe. If you say he is detribalized, that’s an understatement. If you call him just and fair, you are but stating the obvious. Here is a man who is not swayed by any primordial considerations of tribe, religion or social status. He is down to earth, humane and highly cerebral. In his persona, we feel all that is perfect in us as a people. We see Justice Mohammed and know in our hearts that we are indeed a great people.”
Further eulogising the renown legal luminary, Governor Ishaku noted that although Justice Mohammed bows out in November, his absence is already being felt.
He said: “I really don’t know who can actually match Justice Mohammed in this capacity. His exit from the position would surely be viewed as the end of an era that can not be easily replicated. Is it his fear of God, his forthrightness, his deep contempt for opulence, his penchant for the truth, his loyalty to the constitution or his love for his fellow man? He exemplifes the best in his chosen profession and has walked in the wisdom of God in dealing with judgements.”
Going down memory lane, Governor Ishaku said Justice Mohammed had often taken decisions not viewed as popular or politically correct.
“If you analyse many of his positions,” Ishaku said, “you would find a distinct element: the ability to take a stand that might not be popular but is the truth. In our state, he has often shocked some who believe he would be swayed by artificial barriers in passing judgements. He doesn’t. Rather, he normally shatters the glass ceiling, daring the status quo and making historic decisions to the delight of the majority of our people. That was the zeal and hard work he brought to the national stage. We are proud of his accomplishments, we celebrate the momentum he has generated and we hold him dear as a worthy representative of our land.”
Governor Ishaku, who urged legal practitioners to emulate the virtues of Justice Mohammed, observed that Taraba state would find the best ways possible to honour the illustrious “son of the soil”.
He said: “Justice Mohammed is, no doubt, a citizen of the legal world but we in Taraba state proudly consider him first as our own. He has always been an inspiration to many of our legal practitioners. No wonder our state can boast of its fair share of dazzling stars in that sphere. Which brings me to the apt appointment, yesterday, of Justice Paul Galumje, another bonafide son of the soil.”
Governor Ishaku described the appointment as not only fitting but necessary.
He said: “Justice Galumje brings to the Supreme Court the same Taraba state spirit of service, excellence and dedication. I can only congratulate President Muhammadu Buhari, for making a decision clearly based on merit and goodwill beyond the shadows of sentiments. I also rejoice with the legal world who are indeed energised by Justice Galumje’s entry. Right from his days in the state, Justice Galumje had stood out as another symbol of blind justice, exceptionally standing out and rising above the fray. His elevation didn’t come as a surprise to the denizens of the profession. Instead, this appointment, once more has reinvigorate the base, gladden the hearts of Taraba citizens and has demonstrated the independence the judiciary has truly experienced under the outgoing CJN.”