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Some lawyers support relocation of election tribunals to Abuja

19 June 2015, 20:44

Abuja - Some lawyers in the Federal Capital Territory on Friday said that the relocation of some Election Petition Tribunals from some states to Abuja was in order.

The lawyers said in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that security was paramount in the dispensation of justice.

They also said that for lawyers to give their best in a matter, they required an environment devoid of chaos and an atmosphere that would allow for full concentration.

Mr Mahmud Magaji (SAN) said he was in support of the movement of some election tribunals, particularly those of states with security challenges.

"Security is of paramount importance that cannot be compromised for money or for position.

"Before setting up the tribunals, peoples’ lives were already being threatened in those states.

"The extra cost and inconveniences the relocation may cause notwithstanding, the safety of the judges, lawyers, litigants and witnesses takes preference.

"So, I have seen no wrong in relocating any tribunal to a more secured place.’’

Also read: Abia governorship election tribunal begins sitting

Speaking in the same vein, Anthony Ekuma, a counsel appearing before one the relocated tribunals, said the decision was in good faith.

He said "it is in the overriding public interest and safety that called for such decision to move some tribunals from the various states to Abuja.

"Lawyers involved in tribunal matters should also see this as a huge sacrifice and it is part of public patriotism.’’

Meanwhile, some of the litigants at the tribunals complained about the huge cost of prosecuting their cases as a result of the relocation.

Mr Livinus Ugwu, a Secretary at one of the tribunals, complained of difficulties associated with serving court orders issued in Abuja to those in the affected states.

NAN reports that elections tribunals for Adamawa, Borno, Yobe, Rivers, Akwa Ibom and Taraba states are sitting in Abuja.



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