Justice Sylvester Ngwata who was suspended from the supreme court on technical grounds following a corruption allegation and subsequent prosecution by the EFCC has resumed his duties at the supreme court. Justice Ngwata who hails from Eboyi State was one of the judges that participated in the swearing in of the New Senior Advocates of Nigeria and opening of the 2019/2020 Legal Year at the apex court on Monday. He sat at the bench as the 3rd judge in order of seniority during the ceremonies.
The embattled judge was among the judicial officers whose houses were raided by the operatives of the Department of State Services in October 2016. He was subsequently prosecuted for corruption offences by federal public prosecutors. A Federal High Court presided by Justice John Tsoho acquitted Justice Ngwata of all the 13 counts of money laundering and passport fraud instituted by the Federal Government against him.
Justice Ngwata has not been on bench duties for the past three years, although he was said to have been taking his salaries and entitlements. The National Judicial Council said the judge was not suspended but was asked to not to sit on the supreme court until all the issues related to his trial for corruption by federal prosecutors has been resolved. The judgement that cleared him of the charges was obtained in March, 2018 but it is unclear why he did not resume his duties at the apex court until now.