WHAT IS OPD?
OPD means Office of the Public Defender, the office is a body established by the Lagos State Government to render free legal services in criminal and civil cases to the indigent and vulnerable residents of the State, with emphasis on issues threatening the socio-economic right of the poor as well as other disadvantaged group like children and women.
WHERE ARE THE OFFICES LOCATED?
- The Head Office: 2-8, Iyun Road, Off Funsho Williams Avenue, Stadium Hotel Bus-Stop, Surulere, Lagos State
- Ikorodu Office: Candide Johnson Court House, The Combined High/Magistrate Court, Ita-Elewa, Ikorodu, Lagos State.
- Ogba Office: Samuel Ilori Court House, Ogba, Agege, Lagos State
- Epe Office: Ligali Ayorinde, Combined Magistrate/High Court, Epe, Lagos State
- Badagry Office: (Temporary): Main Badagry Town Hall, Badagry, Lagos
WHAT CATEGORIES OF PEOPLE DO YOU ATTEND TO IN OPD?
We attend to all residents of Lagos State who are indigents, poor or oppressed, physically challenged pensioners, widows and citizens that cannot afford the service of a legal practitioner.
HOW MUCH DO I HAVE TO PAY?
Our services are rendered free of charge.
WHAT KIND OF CASES DO YOU TAKE UP IN OPD?
We offer legal representation in Court and also intervene in disputes between parties, i.e.
Child’s Right Custody and Maintenance
Recovery of Possession
Recovery of Debts
Landlord/Tenant (Cases in Court)
Fundamental Human Rights (FHR)
Bail at Police Station
Prison Decongestion Exercise
WHAT ACTION/STEPS DOES OPD TAKE IF THE RESPONDENT FAILS TO HONOUR YOUR INVITATION?
Firstly, on the very day of the meeting, OPD Lawyer calls the respondent to find out why He/She failed to honour our invitation, after which OPD Lawyer will re-invite the Respondent for another meeting. If the Respondent neglects/fails to honour the request and the Petitioner has a good case, the matter will be taken to court.
HOW CAN OPD DEFEND A PERSON IN A CRIMINAL MATTER BEING PROSECUTED BY THE DIRECTORATE OF PUBLIC PROSECUTION; A GOVERNMENT AGENCY WITHOUT BIAS AGAINST THE DEFENDANT?
OPD ensure high quality legal representation to clients through excellence and demonstration of compassion, loyalty, commitment and professionalism, irrespective of the opposing party.
IF I HAVE COMPLAINTS AGAINST SOMEBODY, BUT I DO NOT WANT TO GO TO COURT, WHAT CAN THE OFFICE DO?
OPD provides for the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) in resolving issues brought by clients, therefore many petitions received are resolved through ADR.
HOW DOES THE OPD INTERFERE IN FAMILY MATTERS?
OPD has a Social Service Department whose responsibility is to investigate and interfere in family/domestic matter for peaceful resolution.
WHAT DOES OPD DO ABOUT CHILDREN AND WOMEN THAT ARE VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE?
OPD Lawyers and its Social Welfare Officers carry out rescue mission in collaboration with the Nigerian Police Force and NGO(s) and such victims are placed under protective custody pending the outcome of investigation and decide whether matter be resolved peacefully or to be charged to court.
DOES OPD TAKE UP EVERY LEGAL MATTER PRESENTED TO ITS OFFICE?
No, rather a review of such matter is done and the complaints are referred to other government agencies, non-government organization or any other body that can assist it to perform its functions by virtue of section 2(2) of OPD LAW of 2008.
WHAT DOES OPD DO IF THE MATTER IS AGAINST GOVERNMENT INSTITUTION OR A CIVIL SERVANT?
OPD takes up cases in which it has jurisdiction over irrespective of the government agency involved and handles such matter in the most diligent manner.
DOES OPD TAKE UP CASES WHICH OCCURRED IN OTHER STATES?
The jurisdiction of OPD is within Lagos State therefore if a case reported to OPD occurs in another State, OPD will refer such case to the appropriate agency in the relevant State.
DOES OPD WORK WITH OTHER AGENCIES?
OPD works with other agencies and parastatals including non-governmental organizations which assist it to perform its statutory duties.
DO YOU ALSO REPRESENT LANDLORDS IN COURTS TO RECOVER THEIR PROPERTIES FROM THEIR TENANTS?
When it comes to landlord/tenant issues, OPD statutorily represents the tenant(s)
In court matters.