Emmanuel Ugwu-Nwogo in Umuahia
The Nigeria Law enforcement Force, the Department of Point out Products and services (DSS) and other stability agencies have been barred from blocking entry to the premises and court rooms of Abia State Significant Court or any other court docket when it is in session.
Handing down the purchase, Justice Benson Anya claimed that safety agencies have no right to avert persons from having accessibility to the court, whilst “there will have to not be any arrests in the premises and vicinity of any courtroom, besides as purchased by a court of skilled jurisdiction”.
He gave the purchase next the court docket proceedings on Friday in the situation of HIN/FR/14/2021 Nnamdi Kanu Vs Federal Republic of Nigeria and 7 some others.
The leader of the proscribed Indigenous Folks of Biafra (IPOB) is in the Abia Condition High Court docket seeking a depart to implement his basic legal rights with the federal government, Legal professional Normal of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice and DSS, amongst other people, stated as defendants.
The law enforcement and other stability agencies had shaped the pattern of limiting movements along Ikot Ekpene road, Umuahia and other adjoining streets as effectively as barring individuals from entering the court docket every time Kanu’s scenario arrived up for listening to.
But Justice Anya faulted the excessive enforcement of security, saying that barricading and impeding accessibility to court is an anomaly in a democratic placing and could only be effected by safety businesses if “the head of the courtroom so requests in writing”.
“It is hereby declared unlawful to restrict the citizens and the users of the general public entry to the courtroom and the court docket premises for the duration of the performing hours of the courtroom.
“It is also declared that the act of barricading the court docket, blocking roadways foremost to the court and impeding obtain to the courtroom premises and the courtroom rooms in a democratic modern society by any person less than any guise is unconstitutional, unlawful and abuse of the integrity and sanctity of the court of legislation,” he mentioned.
The decide also frowned on the disruptive functions of protection organizations all through court docket proceedings, noting that “in administration of justice, only the person officers and policemen posted on formal courtroom responsibilities are authorized within the court docket of law and it is so orded”.
According to him, “Legal practitioners, litigants and the basic general public should be permitted free of charge entry to the court devoid of permit or hinderance,” adding that protection businesses should really not portray the courtroom of law as an autocratic institution.
“The judiciary is a democratic institution with a mandate to protect the rights of any particular person or individuals who approach the court docket to ventilate their grievances. It is unlawful to militarise it or trigger the court docket to perform its operate less than the pressure of arms,” Anya declared.
In addition, the court docket purchased that the federal authorities and all the events concerned ought to defend the sanctity of the judiciary, the flexibility and constitutional rights of the men and women.
The situation was adjourned to December 10, 2021 for movement.