By OLUGBENGA SOYELE, Lagos
In what seems to be a reaction to the spate of hate and ethnic pronouncements that has heated up the Nigerian polity in recent times, the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has advocated for the need to build institutions that will alleviate ethnic fears and give a sense of belonging to all Nigerians.
The NBA, which made the call though its President, Abubakar Mahmoud (SAN) in Lagos also stated that “Nigerian need to build strong institutions that can protect everyone regardless of where we come from.
Mahmoud at a media briefing to herald this year’s NBA Annual General Conference which comes up in August said it is the only way the country can have peace and harmony and be respected.
He noted, “For a country where building of strongmen and godfathers is the norm, the NBA advocacy for strong institutions are seen by many as a clarion call to all that there is need to fix institutions that makes the country strong.
“Reminded that the Nigerian people in recent times seems to have lost confidence in the institution of the Justice System, the NBA president said that “it is for these reasons that the association is advocating the need for building strong institutions.
“It is also for the same reasons the NBA has set up a regulatory reform committees to come up with major ideas for transformation.
“The committee has come up with a draft bill that we intend to persuade the National Assembly to work on.
“We are conscious of the reform of the legal profession to really prepare the Nigerian lawyer to take his place in the leadership of the country,” he said.
Mahmoud said that it for this reason that association’s annual conference will focus on building strong institutions within and outside the bar.
He said that the conference will be graced by a host of local and global thought leaders drawn from various spheres of influence including Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN; former prime minister of Georgia, Nika Gilauri; consultant guru, Ram Charan; Attorney General of Ghana, Gloria Akuffo; as well as Forbes Africa’s Richest Man, Aliko Dangote; amongst others.
Mahmoud believes that the conference will be a face-changing legal and business forum that will inspire, teach and challenge members of the Bar to take their place in bridging the growth gap between the Bar and the business world.
The conference chairman, Prof Ajayi said the aim of this year’s conference “is to inspire, teach and challenge members of the Bar to take their place on the wall of construction, in bridging the growth gap between the Bar and the business world, in bridging the development gap between the African Bar and the International Bar, in creating a stone wall of African institutionalism, in building the bridge between the Bar and government, and thus, leaving a legacy for our continent and the society at large.
“The NBA Conference has over time become a melting point of intellectual and policy shaping discourse. This year is going to be no different as we expect more than 5000 delegates. We have just launched our new websites which will leverage cutting edge technology to cater for all conference enquiries, registration and hotel bookings, at the click of a button so we are confident that registration will be seamless and stress-free.”
Prof Ajayi called on interested participants to take advantage of the website to register for the conference, he added that all conference delegates will receive free tablets, pre-loaded with, the Legalpedia App, Nigeria’s most comprehensive law report, as well as other legal software’s that will enable lawyers’ access and monitor recent updates in Nigeria’s legal scene.
He also disclosed that the tablets will also be preloaded with the conference materials.