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Onitsha NBA calls for restructuring

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AT the just concluded Bar Week of members of Onitsha Branch of Nigeria Bar Association, there were clamours for restructuring to assuage aggrieved sectors of the country and facilitate even development, even as they called for reforms in legal practice to meet modern trends.

The branch informed of the need to improve service delivery by practicing lawyers and judicial officers on the bench to enhance the process of attaining justice in the country.

Keynote speaker at the event, Job Odion, in his paper ‘Reforming Legal Practice to Meet Modern Trends in Nigeria’ enumerated ways that legal practice could be fine-tuned to make access to justice easier and more result oriented.
Dr. Odion encouraged formidable partnership in law firms as against the sole proprietorship being practiced in Nigeria, saying that such firms do not grow beyond the scope, resources and vision of its proprietor.

Moreover, he suggested the need for additional measure of case scheduling by trial courts to save the time of the court , lawyers and litigants .
Another reform, the University of Benin don opined include digital recording of proceedings of the court other than long hand practice which he said was cumbersome, slow and debilitates the health of judges.

According to him, electronic filling, service of court process via SMS, email services, admissibility of internet sourced evidence, on-line law reporting libraries , arbitration and multi door courts and fast track procedure in civil cases were recommended as reforms for improving the quality of legal practice in the country.

In his contribution, Ikeazor Akariwe Esq, recommend the introduction of departments, judiciary divisions, more courts room and the engagement of more judges and magistrates to administrate legal process according to their areas of specialty and expertise.

“Anambra State can have 150 high courts, 200 judges,200 magistrates adjourning cases day to day. There is no reason why the federal laws can’t be restructured to enable creation of State Appeal Courts for speedy justice delivery” said Akariwe.
Furthermore, Dr Grabriel Arishie in his discussion recommended reforms in law curriculum of study , instructional materials used in universities , access to online materials , equipping of court rooms to meet global practices.

While presenting their separate speeches the trio of and Ozo Ben Erinne Esq, Chairman NBA ,Onitsha Branch, Peter A Afuba ESQ, Chairman Bar Week Committee, Onyechi S. Ononye Esq, Alternate Chairman, welcomed all the guests lecturers and participants, saying that the lively topics chosen for the bar week were essential to retrain the lawyers and suggest to the government at all levels measures that would improve legal practice and justice delivery in Nigeria.

Highlights of the occasion include , key note lectures, interactive sessions ,celebration of golden cups ,gala night ,Bar dinner /award night ,visitation of incapacitated lawyers ,group photographs ,thanksgiving mass at Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity, Onitsha.

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