AFAM OSIGWE CONDEMNS ATTACK ON OGBANKWA, HAILS MUSLIMS ON EID
The Chairman of the 2023 Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Annual General Conference Planning Committee, Mazi Afam Osigwe SAN has expressed “shock” on the “allegations by our colleague Douglas Ogbankwa about the assault and threat to shoot him by some officers of the State Security Service in Benin, Edo City.”
Meanwhile, the senior lawyer has felicitated with Muslims on the “auspicious occasion of Eid El Maulud.” He stated that “Eid El Maulud is a time of both celebration and contemplation. It marks the birth of the Prophet Muhammad, the epitome of compassion, wisdom, and guidance for humanity. His life serves as a beacon of light, guiding my Muslim brothers and sisters toward the path of righteousness, tolerance, and peace.”
Turning to the reported attack on Ogbankwa, Osigwe demanded that the perpetrators must be brought to justice, saying: “No law enforcement agent or agency should be allowed to brazenly violate the fundamental rights of Nigerians and indeed lawyers. Something must be done about this. This ugly trend MUST stop. Lawyers must be allowed to practice with dignity and respect.”
DOUGLAS OGBANKWA: LAWYERS AS ENDANGERED SPECIES!!
I read with shock the allegations by our colleague Douglas Ogbankwa about the assault and threat to shoot him by some officers of the State Security Service in Benin, Edo City. It is worrisome that law enforcement agents would not only prevent a lawyer from exercising a statutory power to be present while his/her client is interrogated but reportedly assault him and threaten to shoot him.
No lawyer should be made to face such humiliation and intimidation. It is unbecoming of law enforcement agents to put weapons bought by taxpayers to wring use or to abuse their power by trampling on the rights of citizens. Offices of such agencies should not be places people with approach or enter with trepidation because of fear that illegalities may be deployed against them.
The story yet again brings to the fore the emerging reality that lawyers have indeed become endangered species in Nigeria. Many law enforcement agents can scarcely conceal their hostility to lawyers. They are very intolerant of lawyers performing their duties. They do not want the lawyers to be present while they do their work and it does not matter that these lawyers do not interfere with the investigations. Lawyers must be respected and allowed to represent their clients.
No law enforcement agent or agency should be allowed to brazenly violate the fundamental rights of Nigerians and indeed lawyers. Something must be done about this. This ugly trend MUST stop. Lawyers must be allowed to practice with dignity and respect.
I therefore lend my voice in urging the Director General of the State Security Service and the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation to cause a detailed investigation to be carried out in respect of the complaint of by Douglas Ogbankwa. Any person found to have engaged in the assault and threat to Mr Ogbankwa should be brought to book.
Happy Eid el Maulud.
Mazi Afam Osigwe SAN
HAPPY EID EL MAULUD
On this auspicious occasion of Eid El Maulud, I extend my warmest felicitations to our Muslim colleagues. May this day be filled with joy, blessings, and profound reflection on the life and teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon Him).
Eid El Maulud is a time of both celebration and contemplation. It marks the birth of the Prophet Muhammad, the epitome of compassion, wisdom, and guidance for humanity. His life serves as a beacon of light, guiding my Muslim brothers and sisters toward the path of righteousness, tolerance, and peace.
As we celebrate this day, let us remember the profound messages embedded in the life of the Prophet: compassion for the less fortunate, forgiveness in the face of adversity, and a commitment to justice and equality. These timeless teachings continue to inspire and unite Muslims across the globe.
In these challenging times, let Eid El Maulud also be a reminder of the strength and resilience that your faith instills in you. The Prophet Muhammad faced numerous trials and tribulations during his life all in a bit to bring the religion of Allah to stay, yet his unwavering faith and determination brought about monumental change. Similarly, your unswerving faith can help you overcome any challenges that come your way.
May this Eid El Maulud renew your faith, strengthen your bonds with family and community, and inspire you to follow the righteous path that the Prophet Muhammad set forth. As you celebrate, may your homes be filled with love, laughter, and the warmth of togetherness. I pray that Allah’s blessings be upon you and your loved ones today and always.
Once again, I extend my heartfelt wishes for a joyous Eid El Maulud. MAY PEACE AND BLESSINGS OF ALLAH BE UPON THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD.
With warm regards,
Mazi Afam Osigwe, SAN
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