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Falana lists 32 court orders Nigerian Govt disobeyed



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A renowned legal practitioner and human rights advocate, Femi Falana, Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), has chided the Federal Government over disobedience of court orders. Falana, in an interview on Sunrise Daily on Channels Television, declared that he has compiled a list of 32 court orders which were disobeyed by the Nigerian government. He challenged members of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to rise up to their responsibilities to ensure the prevalence of the rule of law in the country.

The renowned legal practitioner maintained that it is not the responsibility of a president or even an Attorney General to handpick which court order to obey.

“In my latest compilation, I’ve compiled about 32 court orders being disobeyed flagrantly by the government of Nigeria which is not in line with the rule of law.

“It doesn’t lie in the mouth of an Attorney General or the president of a country to choose and pick which orders of court to obey.

“When you do that, you are reducing the status of the country to a Banana Republic. And that is why the bar has to rise up now and take its rightful place,” Falana had declared.

He cautioned that except proactive steps are taken, nobody will respect the rights of Nigerians because “there is no penalty for impunity in our country.”

Falana remarked that human rights, democracy and rule of law are not all taken seriously in Nigeria. He concentrated the blame on the NBA, pointing out that it is stated clearly in the constitution of the NBA that human rights and the rule of law be defended.

“The official bar and the private bar have not taken the issue of human rights and democracy or even the rule of law seriously.

“We have a new human rights regime in our country on paper that can be compared with that of any civilised or advanced bourgeois democracy.

“For instance, under the current political dispensation, no Nigerian shall be detained in any detention center in Nigeria without an inspection, monthly inspection of the facility by a chief magistrate or a judge of the federal high court. In other words, you can no longer have indiscriminate arrest and detention,” Falana had said.

He stated that Nigerian lawyers should be concerned that illegal arrests occur on a daily basis in Nigeria; asserting that the law stipulates that you must obtain warrant from a Federal High court before you can search or arrest a Nigerian.

“If you want to search his house, you obtain an order like a search warrant. If you want to seize his phone, you get an order, because your right to liberty, your right to the privacy of your home and correspondent are constitutionally entrenched.


“So, if you are going to violate any of those rights, you must obtain a court order. But what happens in Nigeria? You go and invade somebody’s house in the dead of the night, when you have kept him for few days, you suddenly realize ‘oh, I need a court order’ then you rush to court. No, that’s not our law,” Falana stated.