Leading senior lawyer and former Chairman of the Legal Aid Council of Nigeria, Chief Bolaji Ayorinde SAN has asked the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad to “kindly direct a suspension of the 2021 Annual Courts Vacation in order to save our justice system.”
In the four-page letter titled “RE: THE NEED TO SUSPEND 2021 ANNUAL COURT VACATION,” Ayorinde cited the #ENDSARS Protests, coronavirus pandemic and the recent JUSUN Strike as events that adversely impacted the justice sector.
In what he termed “My humble request,” the Bar Leader said: “It is a well-known and acknowledged fact that, our Judges are hardworking and patriotic Nigerians and as such and in view of the highlighted circumstances that had paralyzed judicial activities across Nigeria, there is a glaring opportunity for the Judiciary to make a bold statement to rekindle the hope of the common man, as well as, renew investors’ confidence in Nigeria as an investment destination. I therefore most humbly accordingly, urge Your Lordship and all other heads of Courts in Nigeria to in the interest of persons who are languishing in detention and awaiting trial and those that their cases have suffered inordinate delay due to extraneous factors aforementioned, kindly direct a suspension of the 2021 Annual Judges Vacation in order to save our justice system.
“My Lord, such a direction will no doubt portray the Judiciary as a most responsive institution and third arm of government that is the last hope of the common man. Such a direction will also definitely and substantially clear most of the backlog of cases which have suffered delays in our Courts thereby making our Courts ‘fit for the purpose’ again.”
The letter was copied to all heads of courts, all chief judges of the various states and FCT, the Nigerian Bar Association President and the Secretary to the Body of Senior Advocates of Nigeria (BOSAN).