The 2021 annual conference of the Nigeria Bar Association, NBA, kicked off, yesterday, in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, with the Chief Justice of the Nigeria, CJN, Justice Tanko Mohammed, accusing the lawyers body of aiding litigants’ assault on the judiciary.
The CJN, who represented by Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Mary Peter-Odili, said: “As Head of the Judiciary, I have tasked all justices and judges to take up the challenge being pushed at us by the times.
“At various fora, I have encouraged my brother Judges and Justices to see the administration of justice as one of the fundamental solutions to some of the nation’s crisis.
“The peace of the nation rests on the balance of scale of justice, and our Courts must ensure that justice is served at all times irrespective of the pressures from within. This is not to say there are no challenges plaguing the administration of justice in the country.
“All challenges of the Judiciary can be internally addressed. Some demand support of the Bar for actualization. One of them is the poor condition of service for national judicial officers.
”Members of the Bar that serve in various arms of government must see the urgency of leading a crusade to address the issue as a matter.
“Another challenge being faced by the Judiciary is the assault by litigants against the institution of the Judiciary when their cases are not met. Unfortunately, some members of the Bar also join them in ridiculing our Courts in private discussions and on the media.
“The institution of our court is sacred and the respect that people have for it is one that ministers in the temple of justice have made the people realise must be accorded to it.
”When judges who do not have a right of reply are subjected to disparaging and humiliating comments in the media, it silently kills their moral and dedication to the cause of justice. I therefore urge the Bar to rise in defence of the Bench at all times.”