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Age Integrity Deficiency Syndrome: How Old Is Acting CJN, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola?

Nigeria’s Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Olukayode Ariwoola, has run into a storm casting question mark on the integrity of his age.

According to the information on the website Supreme Court of Nigeria up till Monday afternoon of June 27, 2022, Ariwoola was born in Iseyin, Oyo State, on August 22, 1958.

But true to most things Nigerian, the date of birth has now been edited and deleted and replaced by “he was born over 60 years ago.”

The Supreme Court website stated that the Acting CJN began his Primary education a little less than a year after he was born in 1959, at the Local Authority Demonstration School, Oluwole, in his hometown. He would spend eight years in school before graduating in 1967.

He then moved to Muslim Modern School in the same town from 1968 to 1969 before graduating to Ansar-Ud-Deen High School, Saki area of Oyo, for secondary education.

Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, also concurred with the original Supreme Court website that Justice Ariwoola was born on August 22, 1958.

dbpedia.org also had the same date of birth – August 22, 1958.

Thisday, in its biography of Chief Justice Ariwoola, said he was born on August 22, 1954.

If it is taken that he was born in 1958, then he is 63 years of age. Yet it is impossible for anyone born in 1958 to start his Primary school less than a year later. Even if he was born in 1954, which makes his age to be almost 68, it is not easy to find anyone to start Primary school in those days at the age of four or five.

Nigerians are still waiting for his real age. Who knows what the final “age” of Justice Ariwoola’s would be.

But what is clear is that his age differential has cast a shadow of doubt on who he really is. If you cannot take the age of the Justice of the Supreme Court for granted, whose own would you?

It is agreed by all that judicial integrity is key to more effective justice delivery, public trust and credibility. And for a Justice of the Supreme Court, not to talk of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, what is required, among others, is high moral courage and high ethics and a reputation for honesty, integrity and fairness.

Nigerians are waiting.

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