The Kaduna branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has advised the Federal Government to consider establishing a special court to handle cases of corruption and other related crimes.
This is contained in communiqué signed by the state Chairman, Sherrif Ndasule, issued at the end of the association’s Law Week and made available to newsmen in Kaduna on Friday.
The week, held from May 13 to May 19, had the theme, “The Fight against Corruption: The Role of the Bar and the Bench”.
It stated that government must provide adequate machinery to strengthened justice delivery system to ensure maximum result.
The association said that such step would go a long way in ensuring speedy trial of corrupt cases and squarely treat the cancer of corruption in the country.
Describing corruption as endemic, the NBA reiterated its commitment in joining the war against corruption, adding that pragmatic and decisive steps must be taken to curb it lest it would kill the nation.
According to the NBA, corruption thrives because we do not recover proceed of the crime of corruption from the guilty and convicted corrupt persons.
“Our law must be reviewed to include compulsory forfeiture of illicit wealth of convicted corrupt persons”.
It stated that the NBA would as a matter of urgency set up and strengthened mechanism to monitor and fight corruption in courts and the legal profession.
It added that the association would also follow up reported cases of corruption within the legal profession to ensure that corrupt individuals whether from the bar or bench are brought to book.
The association, however, urged government at all levels to train lawyers and judges on corruption related issues; to broaden their knowledge and appreciation of corruption as it affect the legal profession.
“With periodic training, the legal profession would be able to contribute its quota by working hard to change the mindset of Nigerians to reengineer their perceptions of the concept of corruption.
“The government must improve the capacity of our various law enforcement agencies in the area of investigation of corrupt cases.
“On our part, we will ensure that lawyers adhere to the code of ethics of the profession in the discharge of their duties,’’ it added.
The NBA equally called for the thorough review of the code of conduct to ensure that it adequately address the purpose of the law and provide appropriate legal frame work for sanctions.
“This should include but not be limited to promptly publishing the declared assets of public office holders and making it accessible to the general public.” (NAN)