Former Minister of Women Affairs Pauline Tallen has apologised to the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for calling a court ruling a “kangaroo judgement.”
In response to a lawsuit brought by the NBA, Tallen was barred from serving in any public office by the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court.
Judgement handed out by Justice Peter Kekemeke on December 18, 2023, mandated that Tallen either publish an apology letter to the NBA in which she personally signed or be subjected to an indefinite ban from holding public office.
Tallen conveyed her remorse for her previous remarks in an apology dated January 15.
In reaction to the ruling on the Adamawa State APC governorship primary elections, Tallen allegedly made derogatory comments about the judiciary. Her remarks were found to be “disparaging,” “unconstitutional,” “careless,” “reckless,” and “contemptuous of the Federal High Court of Nigeria,” according to the court’s ruling.
After Tallen failed to respond to their earlier letter requesting that she retract her remarks, the NBA, led by President Yakubu Maikyau at the time, demanded an apology from her. Subsequently, the group took her to court at the FCT High Court.
In her letter of apology, Tallen made it clear that she did not mean to cast doubt on the independence of the judiciary; rather, her statement had been misunderstood. She greeted the Federal Republic of Nigeria with the utmost respect and offered her blessings.
Subject: “The Incorporated Trustees of the Nigerian Bar Association and Dame Pauline Tallen, OFR, KSG,” the letter referred to a decision handed down by the FCT High Court in case No. FCT/HC/CV/816/2022 on December 18, 2023.
I deeply regret the statement I made in the past, claiming that the Court’s decision in the case of Suit No. FHC/YL/CS/12/2022 (Mallam Nuhu Ribadu vs. APC & 3 Ors), which removed Senator Aishatu Dahiru Binani from her position as the 2023 APC Adamawa State Governorship Candidate, was a kangaroo judgement that should be overturned. I sincerely apologise to the Judiciary and all Nigerians for this mistake.
In general, people took the comment out of context and misunderstood it. It was never meant to criticise or discredit the nation’s judiciary or to encourage civil disobedience against the bar and the bench.
Please receive the utmost respect and gratitude from me. Pray for Nigeria’s Federal Republic!