The Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, has faulted the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, over comments attributed to him that some senior lawyers were frustrating the fight against corruption in the country.
The NBA described the allegation as laughable and an attempt to deny persons accused of corruption right to free and fair trial.
The NBA President, Mr. Augustine Alegeh, SAN, who made the body’s position known yesterday in Jos, the Plateau State capital, said “It is indeed laughable that an agency of government would present counsels to prosecute persons accused of corruption, but frown at counsels representing such persons. What is good for the goose, is good for the gander”.
Alegeh, who was presiding over the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the NBA, also insisted that the federal government must fight corruption within the ambit of the law to respect persons accused of looting the treasury as innocent until proven guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction.
The NBA president said counsels for accused persons were merely representing them and not making up defences, just as counsels prosecuting the accused in court were merely carrying out prosecution, and not persecution.
He said it was the principle of the rule of law that cases brought before the court were given due representation for justice to be seen to be done.