The Enugu State Justice Reform Team (ESJRT) Workshop on Validation of the draft Criminal Code Law of Enugu State
Enugu State Justice Reform Team (ESJRT) workshop on validation of the draft Criminal Code Law of Enugu State held on the 24th of June, 2021 at Hon. Justice Umezulike Auditorium, High Court, Enugu State. The Carmelite Prisoners’ Interest Organization (CAPIO) was duly represented by her Executive Director, Rev, Fr. Jude Isiguzo, OCD, her Project Director, Rev. Fr. Ambrose Ekeroku, OCD, and three (3) Lawyers in the legal team of CAPIO.
Since the draft law was sent beforehand to designated persons, the lawyers present were given the opportunity to lend their voices to the various provisions, the criticisms they may have and or recommendations, if necessary. The team highlighted that the sole purpose of the new law is to capture all the grey areas that were at the time of drafting of the old law, not envisaged –especially with the rise on banditry, terrorism and more sophisticated methods of crime commission that was hitherto, not envisaged by the sought to be amended law.
Credence was lent to the provision in Section 308 of the draft law which gave a wider definition of rape as provided under the Violence Against Persons (Prohibition) Act 2015, to include rape of man, penetration of other parts of a person’s body, and not just a woman’s vagina as is the case in the extant criminal code laws of other states. The house also recommended that punishment for some heinous crimes like gang rape be increased to reflect the gravity of the offence.
At the end of the workshop, the Chief Judge of Enugu State, Hon. Justice N.P. Emehelu FCIArb., F.DRI, FICMC, called for a motion for adoption while Barr Dr Anayo Edeh moved and was seconded by Rev. Fr. Ambrose Ekeroku, OCD.
The Chief Judge was greatly commended for her dutifulness in office. Her tenure in office may indeed be finding its way to a close, however, her reforms in the Enugu State Judiciary will be cherished by posterity.