Human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, has called on the Nigerian Bar Association to do more to stop illegal arrests and detention of Nigerians by law enforcement and security agencies.

Falana said this in a paper delivered during the induction of Mr Fatai Abinjo as the 37th President of District 9110 of the Rotary Club, Ogba, Lagos. 

According to Falana, “it is indisputable that Nigeria has largely enacted laws for the enforcement of the human rights of citizens and foreigners living in Nigeria. 

“But due to the failure of lawyers and judges to hold the government accountable, the human rights of millions of poor Nigerians including civil, political, economic and social rights are violated with almost absolute impunity.

“It is high time the Nigerian Bar Association was reorganised to take its rightful place in the human rights community. 

“Specifically, let all branches of the NBA liaise and collaborate with the Chief Magistrates designated to conduct monthly inspections of police detention centres in each state of the federation. 

“The 1st Vice President of the NBA who is in charge of human rights should mount additional pressure on the Acting Chief Judge of the Federal High Court to designate judges to inspect the detention centres of other law enforcement agencies.

“Attorneys-General who frustrate the execution of judgments or who fail to prosecute all indictable offences should be sanctioned for gross misconduct by the Nigerian Bar Association.

“The concepts of law and justice cannot have deep meaning and even application to the millions of our people who are merely existing at starvation level or even existing below that level. 

“Nigerian lawyers should get organised and reposition the Nigerian Bar Association to end illegal arrests and detention in Nigeria.”

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