Today, suspected thugs reportedly beat up Sylvester Adaka, chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) and other lawyers at the court of appeal in Port Harcourt, Rivers state.
According to reports, Adaka and the other lawyers had stormed the court to disrupt proceedings when the suspected thugs swooped on them. They had arrived to enforce the order of the NBA, calling on lawyers to boycott court sittings to protest the suspension of Walter Onnoghen, chief justice of Nigeria.
However, suspected thugs and litigants reportedly beat them up and subsequently chased them out of the courtroom.
“While we were there in court, a couple of thugs in the court premises attacked the lawyers there, the thugs zeroed in on me and a couple of lawyers. If not for the intervention of my colleagues around, I don’t know what would have happened.
The court was sitting and continued sitting even after the attack on us and we felt that in an atmosphere that was charged like that, the court should have at least reason to allow tempers cool” Adaka told journalists.
A.A. Gumel, one of the appeal court judges, condemned the invasion by the lawyers. “This is incivility. We will not be intimidated. We will do our work. We are here to do a solemn job and we will give justice,” he was quoted as saying.