STATEMENT CONDEMNING THE RECENT ATTACKS ON THE HON JUSTICE MARY ODILI, JSC.
The International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) Nigeria is alarmed at the total politicization of most issues going on in the country, particularly legal cases that have been referred to the courts for adjudication.
We refer to the recent incident where the Hon Justice Mary Odili, JSC is a victim of abuse, attacks on her person and character, not to mention an invasion of her privacy because of a judgment delivered by a panel she headed in the normal course of her work.
Hon Justice Odili, JSC as a human being, Nigerian and especially as a Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria, the highest court of Record in the country deserves respect and protection.
The attacks on her character and premises are certainly not the way to go because of a perceived ‘unfavourable’ judgment. FIDA NIGERIA sees this as violence against a reputable woman carrying out her lawful duty.
Whilst members of the public are entitled to express their opinions freely, it must, however, be done lawfully without infringing the rights of another.
Consequently, we condemn these attacks and the invasion of her personal space.
The Judiciary as the third arm of government must be treated as such, and accorded the full status and respect it deserves; blackmail and threats to an Honourable Justice are of grave concern and certainly does not guarantee the independence of the judiciary.
We call for quick action to stop this negative trend and to stop the inciting statements that heat the polity. There are proper and well laid out legal protocols and processes to be followed when you are dissatisfied with the outcome of the judgement. FIDA Nigeria encourages the use of these processes rather than the tarnishing of the good reputation of a great woman who has diligently and passionately served her country and reached the pinnacle of her profession.
FIDA Nigeria condemns the aforementioned and calls on the Federal Government and indeed all relevant security agencies in the country to be more proactive and vigilant in their duties; they must protect the judiciary and keep them independent without any undue interference.
Lady Justice is blind and impartial; let us work to keep her as such.
Signed for FIDA Nigeria:
Rhoda Prevail Tyoden
Country Vice President/National President
National publicity secretary