By Malacky Ugwummadu
The emergence of Olumide Akpata(Esq.) as the 30th President-elect of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, is both revolutionary and a protest heralding a new dawn that is filled with hopes and expectations. It’s a paradigm shift in every material particular. Mr. Akpata is a deeply committed “BAR Man” who had shown sufficient capacity in known areas of assigned responsibilities.
A lawyer of almost three decades post-call. A non-litigation legal practitioner with immense success in his chosen areas of practice. A relatively young man without the title of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, whose co-contestants were respectable SANs.
In these regards, our hopes are rekindled, once again, in the belief that the Akpata-led executive will be able to address the following issues, which we set out as agenda for his administration:
First, a clear-cut strategy of fostering obedience, respect for rule of law and compliance with court orders in accordance with S. 287 of the 1999 Constitution.
Second, closely related to the first is to quickly develop a robust relationship and deepen the existing collaboration with the executive, law enforcement agencies and the justice sectors across board towards a functional, effective and seamless judgement enforcement processes and procedures.
Third, head-on confrontation against corruption in both the judicial and legal profession. Fourth is improved discipline and disciplinary processes for members. There is also active, proactive, visible, critical and principled interventions in the affairs of the Nigerian State; professional supports and assistances to deserving agencies of government and individuals in the society;
A more proactive participation in the lawmaking and legislative activities of this country; conscious and deliberate protection of members and citizens against any form of abuse and rights violations; welfare of junior lawyers, training, further training and possible specialisation agenda in the profession;
Finally, the promotion and adoption of ICT in the conduct and interactions within the legal profession.
Mr. Ugwummadu, former CDHR President, wrote in from Lagos.