The Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, Udu Branch on Sunday has an interactive session with the Police, Road Safety Officials, and Chief Magistrates of Udu and Effurun to foster harmonious working relationships among stakeholders.
The proactive strategy was the brainchild of the new executive led by Kingsley Asagba Esq.
The well-attended meeting which was held at the Grace Model Group of Schools Ovwian had Chief Andrew Orugbo Esq, former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice Delta State as the moderator.
In attendance were, Chief Magistrate Effurun, Ena Odjugo Esq, his Udu Area Magisterial Counterpart, T.J. Nzekwu Esq, ACP Anche Joseph, Police Area Commander Burutu Command, CSP Aliyu Shabba, DPO Ovwian/Aladja Division and ACC Danjuma Goji, Road Safety Unit Commander.
In his opening speech, Chief Andrew Orugbo welcomed every participant, noting that it was a great day for a new beginning, and called for understanding.
The former AG Delta State also revealed that what causes friction amongst stakeholders saddled with the dispensation of justice is the inability to fight and seek justice.
He insisted that every stakeholder should ensure that the rule of law prevails above primordial sentiments.
On his part, ACP Anche Joseph, Police Area Commander Burutu Command said that the major problem between the police and lawyers most times is the ‘communication gap’, he calls for mutual respect and understanding.
The Police Area Commander said that most lawyers once briefed by their clients go to the police station with sentiments without hearing the other side of the complaints against their client.
He noted that if police receive complaints and make an arrest, they have to do investigations before bail can be granted, he urged lawyers to do preliminary investigations when they are briefed. He also emphasized the need for police officers to differentiate between criminal and civil matters as some petitions are coined to have criminal coloration whereas the issue is purely civil. He went further to clarify the fact that bail is free and lawyers should not accept to pay money for bail or use the money to tempt police officers to get their clients on bail.
CSP Aliyu Shabba, DPO Ovwian/Aladja Division while speaking aligned himself to the position of the Police Area Commander and called for understanding amongst stakeholders in the justice sector.
Chief Magistrate and administrative magistrate, Effurun magisterial district, Ena Odjugo Esq in his address urged stakeholders to show courtesy to one another and called for regular interaction amongst stakeholders.
Odjugo promised a continuous harmonious relationship with the police, lawyers, and Road Safety Officials and called for respect for the ethics of the professions.
Chief Magistrate and administrative magistrate, Udu magisterial district, T.J. Nzekwu, Esq, on his part thanked the Udu Bar leadership for the initiative, insisting that everyone should treat others the way they want to be treated.
Nzekwu urged the Road Safety Officials to give concession in minor infractions due to the harsh economic situation in the country and shouldn’t be quick to punish.
The Learned Magistrate called for empathy, urging everyone to put himself in the other person’s position.
On his part, the Unit commander, Federal Road Safety Corp, Mr. Danjuma Goji, calls for the need for cordial relationships between lawyers and road safety officials but that lawyers should try and have the necessary facilities such as fire extinguishers in their cars. He posited that safety is everyone’s duty. He further assured that he will talk to his men to stop whatever embarrassment on lawyers or judicial officers as the “esprit de corp” should be extended.
Several lawyers including C.D.S. Omon-Irabor Esq also made their contributions on how to foster a harmonious working relationship between the police and lawyers.
The NBA Udu Chairman, Kingsley Asagba Esq expressed his gratitude to the guests and members for taking time out to work for a better relationship.
Asagba stated that his administration will work hard to achieve cordial relationships between the police, road safety officials, lawyers, and the court and that this interactive session will be a continuous exercise to ensure that lawyers work in a friendly environment without any form of intimidation or fear.