Law News
NBA decries Edo Assembly tepidness on law review bill

THE Benin branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has decried what it called a lukewarm approach by the Edo State House of Assembly into passing a proposed bill to fast-track criminal justice in the state.

The body said the proposal had been submitted to the House since the first quarter of 2014 after its Law Review Committee completed its work on the proposal to replace the over 60 years old Criminal Procedure Law of Bendel State.

A statement by the chairman of the association’s Law Review Committee, Rasaq Isenalumhe and made available to The Guardian said: “It is very sad to note that this bill, which has the capacity to revolutionise criminal trials in Edo State, has not been given any attention by the Edo State House of Assembly.

“Instead the Edo state House of Assembly has engaged itself in divisive politics, thereby undermining the purpose of the legislature. We hereby call on the Edo Sate House of Assembly as a matter of urgency to give accelerated hearing to this bill in the interest of Edo people”.

He said the bill titled, “The Edo State Administration of Criminal Justice Bill 2014,” would serve as a viable alternative to the current criminal justice system which it said could no longer accommodate modern realities and that when passed, it would provide for the application of modern technology, such as audiovisual devices in criminal investigations and reduce cases of forceful  confessional statements from criminal suspects.

While decrying the level of congestion in Nigerian prisons as a result of the lapses in the current criminal justice system, he called for an accelerated hearing on the bill, “as a matter of urgency” and in the interest of the people of the state.


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