Abia: Nigeria Bar Association Gives Government 2 Weeks Ultimatum To Reinstate Chief Judged

By KayCee August 6, 2014 02:48

Following the removal of Abia State Chief Judge, Justice Nnenna Otti, by the state government on the recommendation of Abia House of Assembly, Aba branch of Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, has given the state government a 14-day ultimatum to reverse the action or face civil disobedience.

Addressing newsmen yesterday in Aba, chairman of the branch, Mr. Chidozie Ogunji, narrated how one Gideon Nwamuo had petitioned the Abia State House of Assembly against the Chief Judge, claiming that Justice Otti during her recent jail delivery, released two persons, John Barah and Mohammed Bukar.

Ogunji said the petitioner alleged that since the release of the two men, incidence of crime had soared in the state, leading to the killing of his uncle and former state Commissioner for Agriculture.

He said that based on the petition, a committee of Abia House of Assembly reportedly invited the Chief Judge to appear before it after which she was recommended to be sacked, which he said the state government approved.

The NBA chairman stated that the Chief Judge’s decision to release from detention John Barah and Mohammed Bukar, who had been incarcerated for over eight years, was in agreement with the police and the prisons reports and, therefore, said her removal was unacceptable.

He said: “We are giving Abia State government a 14-day ultimatum to reverse that decision failure of which we shall appeal to all civil society groups and to the International Federation of Women Lawyers, FIDA, and all people of goodwill to join us in ensuring that this travesty of justice does not stand.

“This is the first time we are having a female chief judge in Abia State. We see this move as a male agenda to disgrace the Chief Judge in the discharge of her functions.”

Ogunji, who led other lawyers to march round the streets of Aba in black attires in protest, said while they were doing all these, they would also seek the relief of the court to see that the judicial arm of government was not trampled.

“Because by the time this arm of government referred to as the last hope of the common man is subjected to ridicule, we would have automatically lost it all in a democratic setting,” Ogunji said.

The NBA chairman, who said the association took the decision at its emergency meeting, pointed out that the removal of the CJ was illegal, ultra-vires, against the constitution of Nigeria and must be condemned in its totality.




By KayCee August 6, 2014 02:48