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Judge jails Sowore’s lawyer one-month for contempt

FHC judges to dispose pre-election cases within four weeks

A human rights lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, has raised the alarm about being sent to prison by the Chief Judge of Akwa Ibom State, Justice Ekaette Obot.

In a Facebook post on his verified page on Wednesday, Effiong revealed he was in court on a suit filed by Governor Udom Emmanuel against a lawyer, Leo Ekpenyong, for alleged defamation.

The lawyer to Omoyele Sowore of Sahara Reporters wrote, “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.

“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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