A rare gift is taken to the Bench


Azubuike Ihemeje

Tuesday marked the official swearing-In of one our best of the bests, as a Justice of the Customary Court of Appeal, Rivers State.

I join the family, friends, colleagues and myriads of admirers to say a very warm congratulations to one of the most intelligent, erudite, cultivated, savvy, brilliant, and arguably one of the best precious gift-in a lawyer I’ve ever known now, Honorable Justice Paul Ericonda Amadi.

My initial encounter with this newest Justice was when I was in Nigerian Law School, specifically during my compulsory Chambers Attachment, at Manuchim Chambers of OCJ Okocha SAN JP.

It was during those days that he became our teacher, counsellor, and instructor, mentoring me and several prospective lawyers then, preparatory to our success in the almighty Bar examinations.

But, the most interesting aspect is that he enthusiastically gave off himself, his intellects, time, energy, money, just everything for us, absolutely pro bono too.

Yes. For freeeeeee!

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Justice Paul Ericonda not only prepared me for the Bar finals, but he also gave me some of the very strong footings that have in no little measure, imparted positively towards my practice of law till today.

He offered and gave me most of the draft precedence I’ve been using till date, at no cost. Many would testify here afterwards.

Always driven by a strong passion for the advancement and enhancement of the profession, Justice Ericonda became a mentor to many lawyers in Rivers State and beyond.

A lawyer of the finest breed then, Justice Ericonda was deeply into Appellate briefs and in love with Appellate draftings.

If I ever had any tutorage, it’s from him.

As a person, apart from the fact that he’s a Pastor and very passionate with his Christian Faith, Justice Paul Ericonda is deeply;


And extremely and completely filled with INTEGRITY.

I used to easily give up with Nigeria especially with our legal system. I used to get really hopelessly disgruntled. I’ve been terribly discontent. I used to feel that meritocracy is a lofty impossibility here.

But, with the confirmation and subsequent swearing of Justice Ericonda, there seem to be some glimmers of hope somehow.

Truth is, Justice Ericonda being a member of the Bench today is an eloquent testimony to the fact that we haven’t lost every vestige of positives in the system, and that there’s still lots of good to cheer up.

I’m convinced that today is just the beginning of a very fruitful career, for you shall certainly get to the very pinnacle of your career.

Here’s a great potential Supreme Court Justice.

Once again, I say, huge congratulations to one of the rarest gift to the Bench!