Maikyau Decries Action Of Lawyers, Judges In Kano Emirship Tussle

President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Yakubu Maikyau, has bemoaned the role of some lawyers and the courts in the conflicting injunctions regarding the Kano Emirate crisis.

Two courts in Kano State have issued conflicting interim injunctions on the Kano Emirate tussle.

Justice S. A. Amobeda of the Federal High Court in Kano on Tuesday ordered the eviction of the reinstated emir, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi II from Gidan Rumfa palace.

However, Justice Amina Adamu Aliyu of Kano State High Court issued a separate order, restraining the police, the State Security Services (SSS) and the Nigerian Army from evicting, harassing or arresting Sanusi.

Sanusi and the 15th Emir of Kano, Aminu Ado Bayero, are locked in a battle for the royal stool. The tussle has sparked protests from their respective supporters in Kano.

Reacting to the development, Maikyau, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) in a statement on Wednesday expressed his dismay over the conduct of both counsel and judges involved in the cases.

He pointed out the need for an urgent review of the professional conduct of both the counsel and judges involved in these matters.

The NBA President called on the respective heads of the courts to investigate the conduct of the judges and report their findings to the National Judicial Council (NJC) for necessary action.

He said: “I must say, without any equivocation, that the conducts of counsel and the Courts in the handling of the proceedings which culminated in the orders issued by the Federal High Court, the Kano State High Court and again the Federal High Court, in circus, have brought utter disgrace and shame to the profession have exposed the entire legal profession in Nigeria to public ridicule and opprobrium.

“The damage is one that would take the legal profession a long time to recover from. It is unfortunate and was totally uncalled for. For a country whose legal resources and expertise have for several decades been exported and positively impacted not only the African continent but the world at large, it is completely unacceptable that the processes of our courts would be deployed in the manner we have witnessed in the last couple of days, on a subject matter that is as clear as chieftaincy dispute.

“This is a subject that has been sufficiently dealt with by legislation and case law, leaving no one confused about the jurisprudence on the subject-both procedural and substantive.

“Without prejudice to the subsisting actions before both the Federal High Court and the Kano State High Court, it is my considered view that there is an urgent need to scrutinize the professional conduct of both Counsel and the Judges involved in these matters. This is to enable the relevant bodies or institutions to determine their culpability or otherwise, from an ethical and professional standpoint.

“I therefore call on the respective heads of the Courts of the Judges concerned, to take immediate steps to look into their conduct with the view to finding any possible abuse of their judicial offices and file a report with the National Judicial Council for necessary action. The NBA on the other hand will investigate the conduct of the counsel involved in these cases and shall not hesitate to commence disciplinary action against them before the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee, should there be any finding of alleged professional misconduct against them. The Chairman of the NBA Ethics and Disciplinary Committee has accordingly been directed to invite these counsel for preliminary investigations.

“While the NBA shall continue to stand for and protect the integrity, welfare, and independence of the Bar and the Judiciary, we shall not hesitate to call out any Judge or counsel, who engages in any conduct that is capable of bringing the legal profession to disrepute.”

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