The president of the National Bar Association (NBA) has described as “ridicules” the manner in which Judges approached lawyers in open courtroom.
Cllr. Theophilus Gould claimed that it has become habitual on the part of judges to intimidate or demean lawyers in the presence of their clients and the other parties.
“They sometimes respond harshly, if they wanted clarity about an issue raised by lawyers,” the Bar Association president furiously claimed on Monday, August 11.
He made the allegation when he responded to Judge Johannes Zogbay Zlahn’s address at the opening of Criminal Courts; A, B, C, D and E of Montserrado County at the Temple of Justice. Cllr. Zlahn is the Judge of Criminal Court ‘A.”
He spoke on the topic; “The Court as Administrators and Dispensers of Transparent Justice in the System of Government.”
However, Cllr. Gould maintained that the Judges’ actions were contrary to administrating and dispensing justice in the system of government.
“[The practice of ridiculing lawyers] is not in the interest of justice and fair play,” Cllr. Gould declared.
“The party litigant will see it as an expression of interest for the opposite side, which demonstrates that the court is not transparent in the discharging of justice. We must stop it now, if we want to administrate justice and fair play in our court system,” the NBA boss warned.
“It is also wrong and unethical because the court is charged with the responsibility of administering and dispensing justice throughout the country,” he further warned.
Chapter 3, Article (20) of the Liberia Constitution provides that “No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, security of the person property, privilege or any other rights except as the outcome of a hearing judgment consistent with the provision laid down in the Constitution and in accordance with due process of law.”