A former minister of information, Chief Edwin Clark has called on the Nigerian judicial system to put its house in order, claiming that both the bar and bench have thrown away ethics of the profession.
The Ijaw leader made this known on Wednesday in Abuja, where he was the guest lecturer of the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies’ (NIALS) annual lecture on the State of the Federation.
According to Chief Clark, “The Bench and The Bar have some questions to answer.”
“Both the bench and the bar are not doing anything to address corruption and if nothing is done about it, Nigeria will remain in the bottom list of corrupt countries in the world” he affirmed.
He made an example of an injunction granted the former governor of Rivers State, Peter Odili by a Court that prevents any possibility of him facing a trial in the country.
“Peter Odili was found to have stolen N100billion of Rivers state fund and today he is a free man and parading himself as a state’s man” he said.
Citing more complicities of judges and lawyers, Chief Clark named former governors such as Joshua Dariye, Ayo Fayose, Saminu Turaki, Uzor Orji Kalu, as some of the former governors whose trial on corruption charges are stalling in courts due to series of adjournments, and injunctions by their lawyers and judges.
“Their cases are adjourned and adjourned and nothing is happening” he stated annoyingly.
After alleging that former Minister of Aviation Femi Fani-Kayode embezzled some funds, meant for the aviation sector, the Ijaw leader stated that “Femi Fani-Kayode is now parading himself as a moral icon, so why will people not steal” Chief Edwin Clark asked.
“If we don’t fix corruption in this country…we are going nowhere” he concluded.