A group of young men suspected to be political thugs beat up the Port Harcourt branch chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association, Sylvester Adaka.
The incident happened at the Appeal Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on Wednesday.
Trouble started after some of the lawyers led by Adaka approached the Appeal Court in Port Harcourt, presided over by Justice A. A. Gumel, and pleaded that he adjourn court proceedings for the day based on NBA’s protest against the suspension of Justice Walter Onnoghen as the Chief Justice of Nigeria.
Gumel, however, cautioned the lawyers, stating that lawyers should not desecrate the court.
He decried the carrying of placards and disrupting court proceedings by the lawyers and added that the action amounted to turning the court into a public square.
The judge stated that the court was only going to take records of processes, but would hear motions at an adjourned date.
But the angry members of the NBA insisted that the day’s sitting be adjourned, a development that did not go down well with some of the thugs.
Our correspondent observed that some of the thugs attacked the NBA chairman and other lawyers that were with him, insisting that the court proceedings must continue.
Tonye Cole of the All Progressives Congress, who was in court, condemned the episode, describing it as unfortunate.
Also, a former Chairman of NBA, Port Harcourt Branch, Dennis Okwakpam, expressed shock at the incident inside the Appeal Court, describing it as danger to the country.
Okwakpam said, “It is one of the darkest days in the life of this country. People who should know or are knowledgeable are playing politics with everything.”