LAGOS, Nigeria (VOICE Of NAIJA)- Amnesty International has slammed Akwa Ibom Chief Justice, Ekaette Obot, for imprisoning Inibehe Effiong; saying the process leading up to the arrest and imprisonment is a “travesty of justice”.
Recall Effiong was sent to prison by Ekaette Obot, chief judge of Akwa Ibom state, after the lawyer reportedly protested against the presence of armed policemen in court.
Effiong was in court to defend Leo Ekpenyong, a lawyer, in a libel suit filed by Udom Emmanuel, vernor of Akwa Ibom.
Many Nigerians, including civil society organisations (CSOs), have called for the release of Effiong.
In a tweet via @AmnestyNigeria on Wednesday, the human rights watchdog demanded the immediate release of the lawyer.
“Amnesty International calls on the Nigerian Authorities to immediately release Inibehe Effiong from arbitrary detention and drop all charges against him as due process was not followed in his committal,” the tweet read.
“The entire process was a travesty of justice and direct affront on his lawful professional duty as a lawyer.
“The right to fair and public hearing must be observed at every turn during judicial proceedings. This includes access to the courts and by extension to journalists who wish to observe, record, report and disseminate court proceedings for the public”