By Tata Mbunwe
Human rights lawyer, Barrister Agbor Balla has said the arrest of Barrister Richard Tamfu shows the depths of the government’s disrespect for the legal profession.
Barrister Tamfu Richard was arrested in Douala on November 18, and reports say this was because of his critical stance and utterances against police crackdown on lawyers at the Bonanjo Court of First Instance last week.
“The arrest and detention of renowned Human Rights Advocate, Barrister Tamfu Richard and other colleagues is a clear indication that the Government has no respect for the legal profession. This clearly shows a complete disregard and disdain towards lawyers,” said Barrister Agbor Balla in a tweet.
Barrister Richard Tamfu is a human rights crusader who has been fighting against injustices and the protection and promotion of human rights.
“We have recently sadly witnessed a rise in intimidation, threats and reprisals against lawyers in general and those in particular working on human rights and politically sensitive issues,” added Barrister Agbor Balla in his tweet.
The arrest and crackdown on Anglophone lawyers in a lawyers and teachers’ strike in 2016 helped aggravate the ongoing socio-political conflict in the English-speaking regions.
The strike deteriorated into a conflict that has seen the death of at least 3,000 people and has displaced almost a million people, according to nongovernmental organisations.
According to Barrister Agbor Balla, who was among the lawyers arrested and jailed after the 2016 strike, “the State should respect and protect lawyers who promote and defend human rights”.
Mimi Mefo Info