Human Interest

Kidnapping: Anambra lawyers embark on strike, vow not to defend violent criminals again


By Our correspondent

Lawyers under the aegis of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) branches in Anambra State have embarked on a one-day boycott of courts to press home their demand for release of their colleague who was kidnapped by gunmen at the weekend.

Recalled that Mr. Chukwubuikem Azoro, the Secretary of NBA Idemili Branch was whisked away by gunmen at Abagana around 8:30 pm last Saturday.

In a notice obtained by our correspondent, the lawyers stated that the boycott was to enable them press for the immediate release of their colleague, and secretary of Idemili branch of the Nigerian Bar Association, Chukwubuikem J. S. Azoro who was kidnapped at Abagana on Saturday 11th May, 2024.

The Statement was signed by Mr. I. C. Nsofor, the Chairman of Committee of Chairmen and Secretaries, NBA Branches in Anambra State.

The move followed a similar one by NBA Idemili Branch where Azoro held sway as Secretary until his kidnap on Saturday.

A statement by Chukwubuikem Obianyo, the branch Publicity Secretary revealed that his captors had demanded a ransom for his release.

The statement read in part “In response to this distressing situation, the members of the Idemili Branch have unanimously resolved to take a stand against such criminal acts.

“Therefore, all members of the NBA Idemili Branch shall be boycotting appearances in all courts within and outside our jurisdiction.

“Additionally, members of Idemili Branch pledge to abstain from representing individuals charged with kidnapping or armed robbery until further notice.

“This decision is not taken lightly, but it reflects our unwavering commitment to justice and the safety of our members and the community at large.

“We call upon the relevant authorities to expedite efforts to secure the safe release of Mr. Azoro and to take decisive action against the perpetrators of this heinous crime.

“We urge the public to join us in condemning such acts of violence and to stand in solidarity with the victim and his family during this difficult time.”

Speaking, Mr. Ernest Uwanaka called for fast and unconditional release” of Azoro.

He condemned Azoro’s kidnap, while calling on Anambra State Governor, Prof. Charles Soludo as well as the State Police Commissioner to ensure the lawyer’s safe return.

According to the senior lawyer, who is also the Secretary of NBA Idemili Branch Human Rights Committee, “While praying to God for fast and unconditional release of the Branch Secretary, Uwanaka urges the Anambra State Governor, Prof. Charles Chukwuma Soludo and the new Commissioner of Police in the State, CP Nnaghe Obono Itam to assist the NBA, Idemili Branch to secure the release of its member, and beef up security in the state to protect the general public especially legal practitioners and judicial officers whose lives have become endangered due to the nature of their jobs.”

By Ifeizu Joe

Ifeizu is a seasoned journalist and Managing Editor of TheRazor. He has wide knowledge of Anambra State and has reported the state objectively for over a decade.

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