A mild drama unfolded at a Senior Magistrates’ Court in Mararaba, as a counsel, Mr. Mike Dembe, disagreed with his client, an accused over nonpayment of legal fees.
The accused, Ifeanyi Ifegeme, is charged with two counts of criminal intimidation and threatening to kill a housewife, Mrs Maria Ayuba.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that when the matter was called, Ifegeme told the court that he had engaged the service of another counsel, Mrs. Uche Okonkwo.
However, it happened that just as the case was about to go on, Dembe opposed Okonkwo’s representation.
He told the court that he was the lawyer the accused contacted to represent him in the case when he was arraigned on April 8.
“My lord I am confused about this. I am the one the accused hired to represent him in this case, as I am talking my lord, he has not paid me my fees.
“I will hands off the case, when the accused settles all my fees,” Dembe said.
He prayed the court for an adjournment to enable him to settle the issue of payment of his fees.
The prosecutor, Insp. Joseph Ahua, objected to the prayer for adjournment.
Ahua said that he was ready to go on and would not wait for another date.
“My lord, the two counsels are learned gentlemen. They should wait to settle themselves out there before coming to court,” he said.
In a ruling, the presiding judge, Mr Habila Abundaga, warned the two counsel not to disrespect the court.
Abundaga ordered the accused to settle with his counsel and adjourned hearing in the matter until June 19. (NAN)