The Honourable Attorney General of the Federation [AGF] and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN has charged the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to consider change, reform, and review as a necessary ingredients and development of the legal profession.
Malami’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Comrade Salihu Othman Isah revealed in a press statement that the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice gave the charge when the NBA President, Mr. Abubakar Balarabe Mahmoud, SAN led a team of the NBA Legal Profession Regulation Review Committee to pay him a courtesy visit recently.
The AGF surmised that his call translates to the functions of the executive, function of the legislative and indeed the function of the judiciary which goes to establish that there is need for review, change and there is need for collaboration and working together for the purpose of advancing the cause of the nation.
The Special Adviser further disclosed that Malami pledged his commitment to work with the Nigeria Bar Association as well as the Committee to bring about the necessary changes and the necessary contributions that will ensure the audit of the general system as regard to law and legal profession in particular.
Isah said the Minister re-assured the Committee that President Muhammadu Buhari has accepted that there is need for all hands to be on deck to save the legal profession with particular regards to avoidance of corruption and compromises as well as ensuring confidence and desire to unfold and indeed to ensure that the confidence accorded the legal profession is sustained.
The AGF further stressed that things has indeed really changed to a certain dimension for the better, pointing out that time is ripe for everyone to put hands together to ensure that necessary review and amendment are made in order to shape the history of its great profession.
According to him, he is touched when a legal practitioner is accused of compromises associated with the administration of justice and majority of them have suffered unfortunate incidents of having judgment against them, though not out of share incompetence but because compromises are tolerated in their profession.
He said lawyers must be resolve that the time is indeed right for them to work together and ensure that the judiciary as an institution is indeed the last hope of the common man.
“We cannot afford to be part and parcel of the process of compromises associated with the administration of justice, we have to be fair to ourselves that the legal profession will indeed stand the test of time by way of ensuring that the tradition and conventional leadership associated with the profession is sustained positively and indeed for the better”, Malami submitted.
The AGF therefore emphasized that the time is ripe for everyone to have a holistic review of the judiciary process and holistic review of judicial profession for justice, reiterating that they must chart a course that eliminate corruption and equally compromises in their system.
“As a body we have a collective responsibility to ensure that our glory are adequately restored, having the Committee constituted by the NBA is a clear indication that things indeed are not going well and is clear admission that there is need for all of us as stakeholders to come together, work together for the betterment and ensure that the glory associated with the profession is restored”, he concluded.
Earlier in his remarks, the President of the Nigeria Bar Association, Abubakar Balarabe Mahmoud, SAN informed the AGF that their visit is for dual purpose, one, as it is their tradition to go round the key stakeholders to extend their warmest regards and secondly, to acquaint the Minister about the work of the Committee which was just inaugurated after it was constituted couple of weeks back.
He added that, the Committee has already started work and that part of its work is to engage stakeholders.
The NBA boss further emphasized that they have come to wish the AGF well and to commend him for a job well done so far.
“We are very interested in what you are doing as colleagues and as well as the government is doing which relates more importantly to the legal profession, we are always available to assist government and to assist your office”, Mahmoud pledged.
A copy of the Memoranda for the consideration of the Committee and list of members was presented to the AGF by the Chairman of the Committee, Mr. Anthony Idigbe, SAN.
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