Courts in Abuja, the nation’s capital city are still under firm lock against judges, lawyers, litigants, and the general public as the nationwide indefinite strike action embarked upon by state and federal judiciary workers enters its 8th day today.
The courts comprising the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal, the Federal High Court headquarters, and that of the Federal Capital Territory were firmly locked up and their gates chained when Our Source visited them.
Similarly, the National Industrial Court at Area 3, Tax Tribunals, and even the Magistrates and Sharia courts were not spared from the industrial action.
Court workers operating under the aegis of Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria, Jusun had declared the strike action last week Tuesday to back up their demand for full autonomy especially for courts at the state levels as guaranteed by a provision of the 1999 constitution.
Although the constitutional provisions had since 1999 under former President, Olusegun Obasanjo been upheld at the federal level, the state governments are yet to comply with the recognition of the judiciary as a separate arm of government.
Around 11 am when our correspondent visited the courts in the Federal Capital Territory, it was observed that the courts which used to be a beehive of activities are now virtually ghosts of themselves.
Our Source observed at the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal that apart from private security guards outside their premises, no single person could access them as both the entrance and exit gates were put under lock and key.
Unlike last week, however, officials of the Judiciary staff union monitoring compliance with the strike action were not found at the court gates.
The Chief Registrar of the Federal High Court, Mr. Emmanuel Gakko said that the Judges and workers of the court were to resume work from the Easter holiday on Monday, April 12 but that the strike action has made it impossible.
He pleaded with parties concerned to resolve their disputes on time in the interest of the Nigerian public.
However, Jusun President, Comrade Marwan Adamu could not be located for comment at the time of this report, and calls to his cell phone were not answered.
Sources, however, confided in our correspondent that Adamu and his team may have been engaged in one of the series of meetings lined up with Jusun leadership with a view to finding a breakthrough to their demands or take a middle course that may lead to the suspension of the strike latest this weekend.
At the time of leaving the court premises, Our Source observed that heavily armed security personnel deployed to the courts to maintain peace and order when the strike action first started have left with their trucks.