RELOCATION OF COURTS IN LAGOS: Aftermath of EndSARS – By Bayo Akinlade, Esq.

Bayo Akinlade, Esq.

By Bayo Akinlade, Esq.

The Judiciary was dealt a great blow the day after the massacre at lekki tollgate. The Legal community was in complete disarray as the Judiciary’s legacy structure was looted and set on fire by hoodlums.

The Judiciary’s priority now has been to rebuild and in the meantime look at other suitable locations to site court houses.

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RELOCATING the High Court Commercial Division

The Commercial Division of the Lagos State High Court is currently located at TBS which is relatively central. However, with the destruction of the main Court Building, several changes have had to be made.

The Lagos State Government is planning to relocate the Commercial Division to an exclusive residential area in Ikoyi off Osborne Road.

Anyone who knows that area very well will agree with me that accessing that part of Ikoyi will impact negatively on Litigants and Lawyers who use these courts coming from different parts of Lagos.

I cannot say much for the residents of that neighborhood who spent alot just to reside in such an exotic location only to now be exposed to the commercial activities that will follow the courts.

I make a strong argument here that the Lagos State Government should reconsider locating the court within Ikoyi. Between Surulere and Lagos Island I am sure that the Government can find other more suitable locations.

Access to Justice is as important as getting justice itself. If people cannot access our courts then we have failed to do justice.

The leadership of the NBA, SBL, SLP, YLF and other stakeholders should please wade into this matter and assist the Judiciary and the Executive make the right decisions for the benefit of all Court users.

Let us critically consider the road network, the safety and security of the residents around the court location and the cost of getting to such a location before we make move our courts.

We owe citizens to do what is in their best interests and we do this by engaging them in robust dialogue regarding this issue.

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