Akwa Ibom Chief Judge Sentences Human Rights Lawyer Inibehe Effiong To One Month In Prison

Akwa Ibom
Inibehe Effiong

The Chief Judge of Akwa Ibom State, Justice Ekaette Obot on Wednesday sent a human rights lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, to the state correctional centre for one month over alleged contempt of court.

Before ordering the conviction warrant, Justice Obot said she had run out of patience with the excesses and unruly behaviours of the lawyer who is the defence counsel to Leo Ekpenyong.

Ekpenyong is standing trial in a libel suit instituted by the governor of the state, Udom Emmanuel and Effiong Dickson Bob.

Giving updates in on the incident on his Twitter page, Effiong wrote: “I have just been sent to Uyo prison by the Chief Judge of Akwa Ibom State, Justice Ekaette Obot, for one month for defending Leo Ekpenyong in the libel suit filed by Governor Udom Emmanuel.

“The Chief Judge of Akwa Akwa Ibom ordered a Premium Times reporter to leave the court.

“I said my lord, we were thinking that since the proceeding is public, that members of the public should be allowed to observe the proceeding. My Lord asked me to proceed with cross examination.

“I obeyed. I informed the court that I was not feeling comfortable and safe having two armed mobile policemen seated inside the courtroom, that it was strange and that I felt unsafe. I applied for the judge to excuse the armed policemen from the courtroom.

“The Hon. Chief Judge then ordered me to step out of the Bar, that she was sending me to prison. She then ordered the policemen to take me to Uyo prison. And that I should be in jail for one month. I am waiting inside the courtroom for them to bring the conviction warrant.

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“I will be going to the Uyo Correctional Centre now. I have not done anything. I wasn’t even opportunity to say anything before the “conviction.

“Two lawyers in court appealed to the Hon. Chief Judge but my Lord insisted that I must be jailed.”

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