“Justice is the will of God and injustice is not of God,” stated Honorable Justice Esohe Frances Ikponmwen, the newly sworn in Chief Judge of Edo State. Justice Ikponmwen is a long-standing member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The oath of office was administered to Ikponmwen in the Banquet Hall, Government House, Benin City by His Excellency, Mr. Godwin N. Obaseki, Governor of Edo State.
“She is known to be fair and strict in the dispensation of justice,” Obaseki said, “Your wealth of experience as a judge and your ability to discharge your duties without fear or favor, is enough signal that you are ready and qualified to lead our state judiciary,” he added.
Ikponmwen declared in an interview following the ceremony that her attitude of work is to follow the admonition of King Benjamin, a servant of God in ancient America, who said, “when ye are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are only in the service of your God.”
As a Chief Judge, Ikponmwen will head the state judiciary and acts as a chief administrative officer as well as spokesperson for the judicial branch.
Elder Frederick Akinbo, an Area Seventy (an ecclesiastical leader who supervises leaders of multiple Latter-day Saint congregations), describes Ikponmwen as a woman of virtue who relies on the Spirit. “Virtue is a prerequisite to receiving spiritual guidance. It is a pattern of thought and behavior that is based on high moral standards. It is a word we do not hear frequently in today’s society,” he said.
Ikponmwen joined the judiciary in 1980 and is the first female indigene of Benin Kingdom to be sworn in as the Chief Judge of Edo State.