Slain Imo Magistrate Buried, Lawyers Demand Extra Security Measures

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Lawyers on Friday intensified the call for enhanced security in the state to end the series of attacks on judicial officers and judicial facilities in Imo state.

They made the call at a special court session in honour of late Mr Nnaemeka Ugboma, the former Chairman of Obudiagwa Customary Court, in the Oguta council area of the state, held at

Justice Oputa High Court, Owerri, for a valedictory court session.

It should be recalled the magistrate was murdered in February this year by unidentified gunmen in a convoy of motorcycles, and shot him while in his court discharging his constitutional duties. The gunmen were said to have ruffled the magistrate, dragged him on floor before using their gun on him.

According to the Chief Judge of Imo, Justice T.N. Nzeukwu, represented by Justice T.E. Chukwuemeka-Chikeka, presided over the court session, while condoning with the bereaved families over the unfortunate demise of Ugboma, said: “That he was shot and killed while performing his adjudicative functions has once more emphasised the need for a more pragmatic approach to the issue of security and safety of all those who sit in judgment.”

“We are pained and saddened that the Judiciary of Imo state has been diminished again, this time, not by natural death but by death orchestrated by fellow human beings,” he said.

The Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Owerri branch, Mr Ugochukwu Alinnor, said: “The security of our courts, the judicial officers and staff that man these court should be of paramount importance and should therefore be beefed up to forestall attacks on them in the discharge of their duties. Security personnel should be posted to all the courts in the state and orderlies attached to the judicial officers to nip the bud any plan to attack the court.”

He added: “Rather than tackle the security situation ravaging the state, the Police have made members of NBA subjects of unlawful arrests, torture, detention, harassment and intimidation across the state. The recent arrest, detention and torture opf our colleague, Chigozie Chinaka by ACP David Ogenyi, Area Commander Owerri Municipal and his cohorts, is unbelievably dehumanisation and ought to be questioned.”

For the state’s Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Cyprian Akaolisa, described the “security situation in the state as a “dilemma” I  had been a victim of violence in the state as my country home was once invaded and razed down in an attempt to murder me

Anybody could fall victim. We were targeted because we are politicians, but today, anyone can become victim.

Those carrying these guns have no friend, they kill both their friends and enemies.” But he pointed out that “The state Government in collaboration with the security architecture in the state was doing everything to stop the violence.”

Vanguard

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