Nnamdi Kanu: excluding lawyers from courtrooms equals suspension of the constitution – Avvocati

Nnamdi Kanu: excluding lawyers from courtrooms equals suspension of the constitution - Avvocati

Some angry Nigerian lawyers disapproved of the decision of the security officers who continued to prevent their colleagues from accessing the courtrooms during the trials.

They stressed that the courtroom is the “temple of justice” for lawyers; therefore they cannot be excluded from access.

They noted that shutting lawyers out of courtrooms is tantamount to suspending the functioning of the judicial arm of the government.

We recall that the Department of State Services, DSS, on Tuesday blocked some lawyers from entering the courtroom for the trial of Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the indigenous people of Biafra, IPOB, at the Abuja Federal High Court.

Some attorneys, including Kanu’s US legal representative Fein, were denied access to court, a situation that led Judge Binta Nyako to adjourn the matter until January 2022.

However, a human rights lawyer based in Abuja, Maduabuchi Idam, condemned the prevention of lawyers from entering the courtroom on November 10, 2021.

Idam described this action as an aberration and impunity committed by the executive against the basic human rights of the entire Nigerian people.

Speaking with DAILY POST, Idam noted that “the act is a violation of the rights to freedom of lawyers and also a deprivation of the rights of Nigerian citizens to legal assistance as guaranteed by Articles 35 and 36 (6), (C) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) respectively. “

He said that “preventing lawyers from entering the courtroom is tantamount to suspending the entire judicial arm of the government, as courts cannot function without lawyers presenting and defending the case of their clients.”

According to Idam: “I dare to say that the action is not only undemocratic, but an invitation to anarchy, illegality and a sign of total breakdown of peace and order that will ultimately affect not only the lawyers but the Nigerian people in general. These and many other brazen executive rascals are characteristics of a failed state ”.

He went on to say: “I shed tears every time I imagine what Nigeria’s image will be on the international stage, as no democratic system anywhere in the world can sustain such primitive abuse of power.

“A few days ago, precisely on October 19, 2021, the Nigerian people woke up to the news of the invasion of the home of a Supreme Court judge, My Lord Hon. Judge Marry Odili from state-sponsored disbelievers, and here’s another shameful act of the state that prevents lawyers from accessing courtrooms through executive machinery.

“These and many other irresponsible actions of this government have continued to demarketing Nigeria on the international stage, thus reducing the country’s chances of attracting foreign investment or portfolio investment as no sane investor will consider a country like Nigeria for investments, a country where banditry has taken over, a country where the independence of the judiciary is not guaranteed, a country where a lawyer is not free to go to court and plead the case of his client, such an investor he will take a serious risk of losing his investment knowing that the machinery of justice will not be free to do justice when necessary.

“The ban on lawyers from accessing court in any form must be condemned by every voice in Nigeria as I consider it another attempt by the executive to suspend the basic human rights of the Nigerian people as guaranteed by Chapter 4 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria , 1999, and the African Chatter on Human and Peoples Right. This is because no democratic government in the world is authorized to administer its citizens through the order of the barrels of the guns under the provisions of the constitution.

Additionally, Abuja-based legal practitioner Anthony Ehilebo said security officers have no right to prevent lawyers from entering courtrooms, noting that a full-blown lawyer should have free access to any part of the court. ‘classroom.

Ehilebo urged judges to make proclamations preventing security officers from entering courtrooms.

Speaking to DAILY POST, Ehilebo said: “Security officers have no duty on the court order other than to bring people and allow the court to administer justice. I want to record that we must demand a higher standard of our judges and, as they have control of their courtrooms, they must proclaim that those of us who are whims in the temple of justice are allowed unhindered access to this temple …

“They have no right to restrict our movement in the temple of justice, no matter what the issue they have. When a lawyer is chained, he has the right to access anywhere in the temple of justice because he defends the people he represents; should have free access in the courtroom, even on matters where witnesses are screened. Even in matters where confidentiality is involved, he is allowed to enter the most select court sessions. “

When asked if there are provisions in the constitution that disapprove of such actions, Ehilebo replied: “I don’t think there is a provision prohibiting such actions, but what the lawyer should do is seek refuge under those in power. by proclaiming that he is the judge.

“Judges must take responsibility for the temples they administer. If the lawyer can go before the judge in such a case, saying “we have not been allowed access to court”, the judge would now make a proclamation preventing the security agencies from carrying out such action and, of course, that it would be implemented immediately.

“If the judge today were to say that the president of Nigeria is no longer consistent, it becomes law. Once a judge speaks and goes on proclamation, that becomes law. And as I said before, we must hide under this proclamation as we pressure our associated lawmakers with the judiciary to issue laws that protect the sovereignty of our judicial process. “

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