HomeNewsThe Continued Detention of Pius Awoke Esq. and the Deafening Silence of...

The Continued Detention of Pius Awoke Esq. and the Deafening Silence of the Bar

Date:

By M.O.Idam

Since the 27th day of July 2021 that a member of the Nigerian Bar Association, Pius Awoke was arrested along Abuja -Lokoja highway while returning to his Abakaliki base after attending a matter in the Federal High Court Abuja, he has been pepertually kept in the custody of the Department of State Security Service (DSSS) till date, without trial. Sadly, very little or nothing has been done regarding his ordeal by the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) where he pays dues as a member, despite the alarm that has been consistently raised by concerned individuals since 2021 over the incident.

Similarly, not one of the current aspirants to the office of NBA President has thought it dutiful to champion the cause of Pius Awoke’s freedom even as the news have continued to make round the legal community. Interestingly, all the aspirants appear to be in agreement (by conduct) to only engage in issuing farewell messages to bereaved families of deceased members and congratulatory messages to birthday celebrants as their campaign strategy other than advocate for Pius Awoke’s freedom or similar issues affecting members. I, am sincerely concerned that Nigerian Lawyers are yet to form or have an association that prioritises the welfare of its members.

In light of the foregoing, I have today taken the decision that my vote will not count in the forthcoming NBA election, except Pius Awoke and other lawyers illegally held in detention are released or until I see any of the aspirants show readiness to champion this cause.

I hereby respectfully call on all the well-meaning members of the Bar; the Learned Silks, Elders of the Bar, Seniors and Colleagues to demand the immediate release of Pius Awoke from DSSS custody or that he be tried without further delay if there is a primafacie offence made out against him.

Those aspiring to lead NBA must be ready to speak for its members and not just to use the platform to pursue fame and personal ambitions.

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