The attention of the NBA, Abuja Branch (Unity Bar) has been drawn to the brutal treatment and ill reception that was meted out on Mr. Justin Gbagir, Esq; the Chairman of NBA, Makurdi Branch and breach of the Branch Treasurer’s fundamental rights.
We condemn this act of brutality in very strong terms. This act of brutality by law enforcement agents against lawyers is one brutality too many.
While expressing our regret for the present situation in our Country, particularly the imperious and overbearing powers habitually exhibited by the law enforcement agents, it is equally expedient to remind all law enforcement agencies, particularly the EFCC, that their duty is solely hinged on the enforcement of the law; without which any organization, however small in number, would crumble.
As rightly stated by Stephen Fry; “Mankind can live free in a society hemmed in by laws, but we have yet to find a historical example of mankind living free in lawless anarchy.”
The canker worm that steadily eats deep into the fabric of our dear nation has constantly been that of Police brutality. However, presently, the EFCC brutality is gradually becoming a thing of grave concern.
Having painstakingly read through the entire Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Act, particularly Sections 6 and 7 of the Act which plainly dictates the functions of the Commission; we were unable to locate the paragraph under which the Commission is empowered to maltreat citizens of the Country they swore to protect.
Flowing from the above, we hereby demand that the officers responsible for this brutality be brought to book. We also call for the reorientation of all law enforcement agencies in Nigeria on rules of engagement with citizens. We call for a change of the minds, focus and direction of these agencies to one that would improve and enhance public cordial relations. It is only then we can anticipate efficiency, effectiveness and an attitudinal change in cordial public relations.
On behalf of the entire members of the Nigerian Bar Association, Abuja Branch (Unity Bar) we hereby assure every member and Executives of the NBA Makurdi Branch of our unwavering support in this difficult time.
Until normalcy is restored in the Country and Nigerian Lawyers and indeed citizens are treated with utmost respect, we will continue to stand in unity against brutality and lawlessness of any kind.
We stand in solidarity with you.
God bless the NBA, Abuja Branch (Unity Bar). God bless the NBA, Makurdi Branch.
God bless the Nigerian Bar Association.
I thank you for your attention.
Prince Adebiyi Adetosoye
For: NBA Abuja (Unity Bar) 9th of June, 2021