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A group of legal professionals within Imo State are urging for increased security measures to be implemented in the region, aiming to prevent any future assaults on judicial personnel, staff, and court buildings.
The request was put forward by the legal professionals during a valedictory session organized to pay tribute to the late Magistrate Nnaemeka Ugboma, the former chairman of Obudiagwa Customary Court in Oguta Local Government Area.
The Eastern Update has reported that Ugboma was fatally shot by unidentified gunmen on February 2, 2023.
The assailants, purportedly on motorcycles, reportedly singled out the 55-year-old man as their intended victim and shot him dead while he was overseeing a court session.
Roughly eight months after the event, lawyers congregated at the Justice Oputa High Court in Owerri and put forward an argument for strengthened security measures in the state.
Speaking at the session, Chief Judge of Imo, Justice T.N. Nzeukwu, who was in charge, condoled to the families affected by the unfortunate death of Ugboma.
‘That he was shot and killed while performing his adjudicative functions has once more emphasised the need for a more pragmatic approach to the issue of security and safety of all those who sit in judgement.’
‘We are pained and saddened that the judiciary of Imo has been diminished again, this time not by natural death but by death orchestrated by fellow human beings,’ he said.
Nzeukwu was represented by Justice T.E. Chukwuemeka-Chikeka.
Furthermore, the chairman of the Owerri branch of the Nigerian Bar Association, Mr. Ugochukwu Alinnor, highlighted the significance of Ugboma’s death in drawing attention to the security weaknesses jeopardizing the lives of judiciary officers and staff.
‘The security of our courts, the judicial officers and staff that man these courts should be of paramount importance and should therefore be beefed up to forestall attacks on them in the discharge of their duties.’
‘Security personnel should be posted to all the courts in the state and orderlies attached to the judicial officers to nip in the bud any plan to attack the court,’ he said.
Alinnor censured the police for the reported incidents of inhuman and degrading treatment directed at law-abiding citizens and members of the association in Owerri.