Justice Pius Ifeanyichukwu Okpara sworn in as President, Customary Court of Appeal – Imo State

Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo state has sworn in a new Acting President of Customary Court of Appeal in the state.

Performing the ceremony at High Court Square, Owerri, Governor Okorocha charged the newly sworn in customary court President, Justice Pius Ifeanyichukwu Okpara and other members of the BAR Association to aspire for excellence, urging that tradition and old practices observed in the legal system have not moved the stat forward.

Governor Okorocha explained that the state government is set to do something new and different to make Imo a destination of choice which informed the reason for his self sacrifice on free education.  He further enjoined the Bar Association to repackage the legal system in the state.

The governor also called on the judges to take a second view on the law on kidnapping, stressing on the increase and incessant occurrence of the said crime activities in the state in recent time.

He advocated that lawyers should obtain endorsement from the Bar Association before bailing any suspect caught in kidnapping and robbery cases.

He however commended the efforts and manner in which the judges have carried on the legal system in the state and promised that the state would take care of the retired judges and other statesman, who have spent their time in service to the state and nation.

In a keynote address, the Ag. President Customary Court of Appeal, Justice Pius I. Okpara noted that his appointment was done based on legal profession order of seniority which he said has been observed for years and thanked Governor Okorocha and the Chief Judge for sticking to the rules which he said has granted many justices including himself.

Justice Okpara prayed for the contractors handling the renovation of the Bar block to expedite action for the completion of the building which he said would enable the judges speed-up hearing of appeals. He pledged to uphold the honor bestowed on him to make Imo people proud.

The highlights of the occasion was the presentation of Prado Land Cruiser Jeep to Chief Judge, Justice Benjamin Njemanze and a Hilux van to the Acting President, Justice Pius I. Okpara to enable them carry out their functions.

Also N5 million pledged by his predecessor was redeemed.

Omeoga Ugonma

For SSA Media to the Governor

21st December, 2011

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