THE Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has condemned the fight between officials of the Department of State Service (SSS) and the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS) over custody of suspended Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor Godwin Emefiele.
The NBS, In a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary Akorede Lawal on Wednesday, July 26, described the altercation as disgraceful and unlawful.
“The NBA has further condemned the brazen disrespect for the judicial process and sanctity of the court premises. The NBA has particularly denounced the DSS for its peculiar part in the disgraceful and unlawful conduct, considering the fact that the Court had earlier ordered that the suspended CBN Government be kept in a Correctional Centre pending the perfection of his bail conditions.
“According to the NBA President, Mr. Yakubu Chonoko Maikyau, OON, SAN ‘the courts and judicial processes remain the barometer by which the conduct of persons or agencies of government are gauged in assessing the rule of law’ ” the statement read.
The association added that the display between both agencies was a result of lack of discipline and professionalism in security outfits across the country, which it said was responsible for the slow progress in the fight against insecurity.
“A situation where officers of Federal Government agencies engage in a fight as witnessed by the public, for whatever reason, is antithetical to our security as a nation and creates a recipe for anarchy and chaos.
“Both the DSS and the NCoS are important institutions dealing with national security and administration of justice respectively, and the need for them to work in concert towards attaining justice in a secured Nigeria cannot be overemphasised,” the NBA noted.
The lawyers’ body further called for disciplinary measures to be taken against the officials involved, as well as overhaul of the institutions, and reorientation of staff.
Operatives of the two agencies engaged in a public fight over the custody of Emefiele at the Federal High Court in Lagos on Tuesday, July 25.
The fight occurred after the court granted Emefiele bail in the sum of N20 million and one surety in like sum.
The High Court also ruled that Emefiele be remanded in prison custody pending the fulfilment of bail conditions.
However, following the clash with the NCoS operatives, the DSS rearrested the suspended CBN governor in the court premises, minutes after he was granted bail.