Lawyers lament as Abuja court adjourns all cases

GavelIt was a very disappointing day for lawyers as judges of the Federal High Court, Abuja, adjourned all cases scheduled for yesterday till today.

According to one of the court registrars, cases were adjourned to enable judges attend a seminar.

As usual, lawyers were seen in their numbers moving into different courtrooms for their respective cases.

Among the cases scheduled to be heard yesterday were those between the Federal Government and the National Publicity Secretary, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP ), Olisa Metuh, and the one involving former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd).

The two criminal cases were slated for hearing before Justice Okon Abang yesterday morning, and as early as 8.45 am, the accused persons were in court. Also present were their counsel as well as the prosecution counsel.

As they were waiting for Justice Abang, who has good record of punctuality, to make his entry into the court, it was announced that the cases have been adjourned till Thursday, March 24.

It was however not clear if Justice Abang would be continuing with Metuh’s case or would be transferring the case file to another judge, at the resumed hearing today.

Metuh, through his lead counsel, Emeka Etiaba (SAN), had on March 16, petitioned the Chief Judge of Federal High Court, Abuja, Justice Ibrahim N. Auta, urging him to transfer the case to another judge for fear that he might not get justice from Abang’s court.

But in his reaction, Justice Abang told the Court that until decision was taken on the petition, he would continue to hear Metuh’s case.

“I want to say that I have a circular from my boss that where there is a letter seeking the transfer of a particular judge, the judge shall continue to preside over the case until a decision is taken.

“As such, I shall continue to preside over this matter until the Chief Judge takes decision. I cannot be blackmailed and I fear no evil”, Justice Abang had stated.

He later adjourned the case at the instant of the Defendant till yesterday for Metuh to open his defense.



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