Fire Incident Ravages Kwara High Court, Consuming Over 200 Case Files

Fire Incident Ravages Kwara High Court, Consuming Over 200 Case Files

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A devastating fire outbreak at the Kwara State High Court has resulted in the destruction of over 200 case files, dealing a significant blow to the court’s operations. The Kwara State Fire Service has attributed the blaze to a power surge, which caused extensive damage to various sections of the court premises.

Reports indicate that the litigation office, along with other vital areas within the high court, bore the brunt of the inferno. The loss encompasses not only ongoing case files but also records of concluded cases spanning back to the establishment of the court, posing a considerable setback to the judicial system in Kwara State.

In a statement to Daily Trust, the Chief Registrar of the Kwara State High Court, Magistrate Ibironke Olawoyin, expressed deep regret over the incident. She underscored the critical role played by the affected section, referring to it as the “engine room” of the high court’s administrative and legal processes.

Olawoyin lamented the magnitude of the damage, noting the loss of appeal cases, ongoing proceedings, and filed processes, including upcoming cases. She revealed that not a single file was spared from the flames, emphasizing the devastating impact on the court’s operations.

Efforts to mitigate the impact of the incident had been underway, with plans to digitize court files initiated about three weeks prior to the fire outbreak. Unfortunately, the implementation of this initiative was halted by the unforeseen disaster.

A senior official within the Kwara State judiciary, speaking on condition of anonymity, emphasized the urgent need to assess the extent of the damage and identify the affected cases, particularly those of high profile.

Meanwhile, Kamaldeen Gambari, Chairman of the Ilorin branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), emphasized the need for preventive measures to avert future occurrences. He suggested the establishment of a fire service unit within the high court premises and advocated for the digitalization of court files to prevent loss in similar situations.

A statement issued by the Head of Media and Publicity of the Kwara State Fire Service, Hassan Adekunle, commended the prompt response of firefighters to the distress call. Despite the challenging circumstances, the firefighters managed to prevent the complete destruction of the State High Court building, demonstrating their commitment to saving lives and property.

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