By Uchechukwu Enem and Mercy Hill
The Catholic Diocese of Awka has opened an extension of its law firm, Corona Law office, in Awka. It is located at Bishop Simon Okafor Plaza, Nodu, Okpuno.
The office which was opened, May 30, coincided with the increasing rates of abuses, molestations, violation of men and women’s rights, and sexual harassment, among others. To this end, the Awka Catholic Diocese has decided to fashion out ways of giving voice to the voiceless through the services of the law firm.
Performing the official opening and blessing of the facility, the Catholic Bishop of Awka, Most Rev. Paulinus C. Ezeokafor, said the office was the third in the series of law offices operated by the diocese to help people to seek and obtain justice for their cause which they would otherwise not have gotten because of poor finances
Responding to questions, the Bishop also noted that the Church had a duty to care, not only for the spiritual well-being of the people, but also to help the less privileged to navigate the intricate areas of the country’s justice system.
The Catholic Prelate commended the Chief Legal Officer of the new firm, Rev. Fr. Barr. Clement Muozoba, for his diligence and dedication in piloting the affairs of the firm and asked for more efforts.
When asked whether the name, Corona, had connection with the deadly coronavirus, the Bishop explained that the name was chosen long before the emergence of the pandemic and therefore had nothing to do with it, but rather said the word was driven from the Latin meaning, crown.
For his part, the manager of Corona Law Office, Rev. Fr. Barr. Clement Muozoba, praised the bishop for his foresightedness and love for the downtrodden. He expressed happiness over the creation of an additional law office in the diocese, disclosing that the office could be reached at any time.
The Director of the Diocesan Equity Office, Barr Edwin Obiorah, said the new office was a thing of joy, noting that the office would be fruitful. He described Rev. Fr. Clement Muozoba as a wonderful material for the office, even as he specially thanked the Bishop for his kindness and love for humanity.
Also speaking, Rev. Fr Anthony Ezoeke, who had been a lawyer before his priestly ordination, commended the Bishop for his vision to diversify. He expressed happiness for the development and prayed that the office achieved its purpose, while thanking Fr Obiorah for his legal activities in the diocese.
Fr Jude Ezeanokwasa, also a lawyer, said the Corona Office was a sign of growth in the diocese. He said he was elated to see the diocese opening more law firms to help the people and commended the diocese for her visionary spirit.
The priest noted that Awka Diocese seemed to be upholding the flagship of legal practice in every Catholic Church in Nigeria.
For their part, the Chancellor of the diocese, Fr Francis Chidume, and the Diocesan Financial Administrator, Fr. Francis Oranye, expressed happiness over the development and assured the people that all cases would be treated well, and that justice would be given at a reasonable cost.
Some workers in the Equity Office, Uche Mbosi (Secretary) and Barr Innocent Ifeanyi, expressed their joy over the opening of the office. They said that it was a welcome development which would serve as an outreach to people who sought for justice.
It will be recalled that over the years the Catholic Diocese of Awka has been offering legal services to the Church and people through her Equity Law Firms at Awka and Ekwulobia. Corona Law Firm in Okpuno is the third in the series.
The event attracted both civil and ecclesiastical lawyers.