NBA Aba Branch To Boycott Justice Uche Okoroafor’s Court, Vows To Sanction Lawyers Who Flout The Resolution
The Nigerian Bar Association, Aba branch has resolved to boycott any appearance before Hon. Justice C.U. Okoraofor of the Abia State, Aba Judicial Division. This resolution was reached on the Friday, 10th June, 2022, when the Branch held its monthly general meeting where one of the topics of contemplation was the issue of Hon. Justice C.U. Okoroafor`s disdain towards lawyers and his outright refusal to acknowledge the existence and use of the Abia State (Practice & Procedure) Rules, 2021 as well as his refusal to entertain civil matters in his court, and the subsequent action of the bar on the issue.
In a statement sighted The Lawyer dated the 10th Day of June, 2022 and signed by the Chairman and Secretary of the NBA Aba Branch, Bertram Faotu Esq and Chinedu Nwaozuzu Esq respectively, the branch communicated to the entire legal profession in Nigeria her resolutions arrived after the deliberations on the issues surrounding the learned Justice`s attitude.
The letter stated that the branch had earlier after deliberations on this issue and the report of the Bar-Bench committee on same issue in her February General Meeting on the 12th of February, 2022, reached out to the learned Justice to discuss these issues, but were rebuffed by the Judge
This resulted in their subsequent discussion in the June general monthly and the resolutions arrived unanimously by the Branch after successful deliberations are thus;
- That members of the Nigerian Bar Association, Aba Branch shall forthwith stop further appearance before Hon. Justice C.U Okoroafor for the above-mentioned reasons and his disdain and condescending attitude towards lawyers.
- That any member who attempts to or violates this unanimous resolution of the branch shall be sanctioned.
- That the Executive Committee and members of the branch shall be at the High Court No. 4 Aba from Tuesday, 14th day of June, 2022 to ensure full compliance with the resolution.
- That the Branch should immediately forward the resolution to the Chief Judge of Abia state, the Hon. Attorney general and Commissioner of Justice, Abia state, the President of the Nigerian Bar Association and all neighboring Branches of the Nigerian Bar Association.
The rationale for the resolutions according to the Branch were thus: “the resolutions was arrived pursuant to the learned Justice`s ‘continued show of absolute disdain for proper judicial conduct and particularly his blatant refusal to use and or allow lawyers to rely on and or use the Abia State (Practice & procedure) Rules, 2021 in his court on the erroneous premise that there was no High Court Civil Procedure Rules in existence in Abia State. “
In addition to these, the Branch stated that the Chief Justice of Abia State was yet to transfer the learned justice out of the judicial division despite the Branch`s petition to the Chief Justice requesting the transfer of the learned justice and stating their reasons for the request. All these according to the branch influenced their deliberations and hence the resolutions.