by Rachel Ogbu
The father of a clerical officer has filed a petition against a female Federal High Court judge in Lagos for assaulting his son.
The incident said to have occurred in May 2013 involved Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia and the court clerk, Israel Okodugha who was said to have gone to her chambers to inform her that he was going home at 4:15p.m., when she hit him.
According to reports, Okodugha’s father, S. O. Okodugha, petitioned the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta, also coping in the most senior judge in the Lagos division of Federal High Court, Justice James Tsoho and Chief Registrar and Deputy Chief Registrar in charge of Administration at Lagos division of the court.
In the petition, Okodugha narrated how his son was assaulted:
“Sometime in the month of May 2013, at 4:15p.m., he (Israel) entered the chambers to inform her Lordship that he wished to accompany the staff bus home since the money on him would not be sufficient to carry him home that evening to Ikorodu by public transport.
“In the presence of female students, her Lordship got up from the seat, went to Israel, grab his ears with her nails, pulled them and, in the process, inflicted pains on the ears and wound on the back of his left ear.
“He bled on the ear to the house that night. We had to take him to a nearby pharmacy to give him analgesics after washing the wound with antiseptics.
“Before the incident, our son, Israel, was one of the staff her Lordship was using as house-keeper to scrub the toilet, wash her clothes, sweep and clean the house during official hours and even at weekends.
“This continued until Israel told her Lordship that he had to attend lectures on weekends.”