By Celestine Ajayi
Justice Dorcas Agishi of a Federal High Court in Jos, on Tuesday warned lawyers not to engage in actions that cause delay in cases.
Justice Agishi gave the advice while adjourning a criminal case filed against a 35 year-old Man, whose defence Counsel, M.T. Dacha, entered a No-Case Submission at the opening of his defense before her (Judge).
“As legal practitioners, the courts expect a lot of decorum from you so as help in the speedy dispensation of justice to the public as expected of the Judiciary.
“We have some cases that are of 2016 and 2017 that needed to have been dispensed of since 2020 but are still on going in this new year, 2021.
“I want to strongly caution here today that I won’t tolerate any act from any lawyer that wouldn’t allow free flow and quick dispensing of some of those cases this Year, ” she warned.
The judge said, ” I expect you lawyers to bugle up and tighten your belts this year for us to tidy up pending cases and finish with them without further delay.”
When the criminal case against Lepan David, was called, Dacha told the Court he served the prosecuting Counsel, Ms Marvelous Akute, with his written address on the no-case-submission.
In response, Akute, a Pupil State Counsel with the Plateau Ministry of Justice, told the court that “we are not replying to their no-case-submission.”
“My Lord, I have been instructed by my boss not to reply to the defence Counsel’s written address of no case submission but leave it to the discretion of the court, ” Akute said.
When Justice Agishi asked her why the prosecution was not ready to reply to the written address of the defence Counsel, Akute answered, “that is the instruction given to me by my superior in the ministry.”
It was at that stage that the judge cautioned lawyers against any action that would not give room for speedy dispensation of cases in courts.
She, however, adjourned the case to Jan. 26 for ruling on the no-case submission of the defence Counsel.