Gunmen Shoot Dead NSCDC Officer In Ekiti

NSCDC logo.

 

An officer of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Segun Ayebulu, has been shot dead by suspected kidnappers in Ekiti State.

The ugly incident occurred Saturday evening when the officer, alongside other passengers was in transit between Oke-Ako and Irele which shares border with Kwara State.

The NSCDC Public Relations Officer, Ekiti Command, Tolu Afolabi, confirmed to Channels Television that the deceased was heading to his town in Ogbe, Kogi State, when gunmen attacked his vehicle.

The Corps’ spokesman added that other occupants of the vehicle were abducted while the corpse of the man has been deposited in a morgue within the state.

The corps affirmed that it is on the trail of the culprits in collaboration with other security agencies as investigation and public update is in progress.

Full List: Burna Boy, Davido, Others Win Big At Headies 2022

Nigerian pop stars, Wizkid and Burna Boy.

 

Nigerian singers again shined at the 15th edition of the Headies Award having won several categories.

See Full List:

Best Recording Of The Year

Celebrate Me – Patoranking

Lyricist On The Roll

A-Q – The Last Cypher

Best Rap Single

Feeling – Ladipoe Feat. Bnxn

Best Vocal Performance (Female)

Waje – “Last Time”

Best Music Video

Directed By Tg Omori – Champion (Fireboy Dml Feat. D Smoke)

Best Streethop Artiste

Goya Menor & Nektunez – Amenor Amapiano Remix

Best Rap Album

Carpe Diem – Olamide

Album Of The Year

Made In Lagos (Deluxe Edition) – Wizkid

Song Of The Year

Essence – Wizkid Feat. Tems

Humanitarian Award Of The Year

Davido

Digital Artiste Of The Year

Davido

Best Reggae & Dancehall Album

Three – Patoranking

Producer Of The Year

Sarz – “Monalisa” (Lojay & Sarz)

Best Inspirational Single

Cultural Praise – Kcee & Okwesili Eze Group

Songwriter Of The Year

Adekunle Gold – “Sinner”

Best R&B Single

Essence – Wizkid Feat. Tems

Best Afrobeats Single

Peru – Fireboy DML

Best Alternative Single

Doings – Flavour

Best Alternative Album

Intermission – Ibejii

Best Central African Artiste Of The Year

Innoss’b

Special Recognition (Outstanding Impact On The Entertainment Industry)

Efe Omorogbe

Sunday Are

Bose Ogulu (Play Video Drop)

Special Recognition (Talent)

D’banj

Headies’ Viewer’s Choice

Ayra Starr – Bloody Samaritan

Next Rated

BNXN

Best Vocal Performance (Male)

Oxlade – Ojuju

Best R&B Album

If Orange Was A Place – Tems

Best Male Artiste

Burna Boy

Rookie Of The Year

Fave

Best West African Artiste Of The Year

Gyakie

Best North African Artiste Of The Year

Latifa (Tunisia)

Best Southern African Artiste Of The Year

Focalistic (South Africa)

Best East African Artiste Of The Year

Diamond Platinumz

African Artiste Of The Year

Burna Boy (Nigeria)

Best Collaboration

Essence – Wizkid Ft. Tems

Best Afrobeats Album

Made In Lagos – Wizkid

Best R&B Single

Essence – Wizkid Feat. Tems

Hall Of Fame

Angelique Kidjo

International Artiste Special Recognition

Akon

Wyclef Jean

 

US Unemployment Rate Rises To 3.7% In August

US President Joe Biden announces student loan relief on August 24, 2022 in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC. Biden announced that most US university graduates still trying to pay off student loans will get $10,000 of relief to address a decades-old headache of massive educational debt across the country. (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY / AFP)
US President Joe Biden announces student loan relief on August 24, 2022 in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC. Biden announced that most US university graduates still trying to pay off student loans will get $10,000 of relief to address a decades-old headache of massive educational debt across the country. (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY / AFP)

American employers slowed the pace of hiring in August after the surprising surge in the prior month and the jobless rate edged up, according to government data Friday, which could offer the central bank some relief that its inflation-fighting efforts are working.

The Federal Reserve is paying close attention to the progression of the hot job market, looking for signs of easing as it tries to cool the economy with steep interest rate hikes to tamp down inflation which has reached a 40-year high.

While the data showed wages continued to rise, the unemployment rate ticked up as more workers joined the labor force, a welcome development that could allow the Fed to opt for a smaller move later this month after two consecutive super-sized rate increases.

Even with the slowing pace, the job gains bring employment above the pre-pandemic level, the Labor Department said in the closely watched monthly report.

The US economy added 315,000 jobs last month, the report said, which was in line with what economists were expecting after 526,000 hires in July.

The unemployment rate moved back up to 3.7 percent, after dipping to 3.5 percent in the prior month, according to the data.

But wages continued to climb in August, as average hourly earnings rose another 10 cents, or 0.3 percent, to $32.36. Over the past 12 months, worker pay has increased by 5.2 percent.

Continued upward pressure is a cause for concern since the Fed fears it could lead to a wage-price spiral and push inflation higher.

Surging prices, exacerbated by high energy prices due to the Russian war in Ukraine, as well as ongoing supply chain struggles and Covid-lockdowns in China, has prompted the Fed to raise the benchmark borrowing rate four times this year, including giant 0.75 percentage point increases in June and July.

However, the latest data “may tip the scale towards a 50-basis point rate hike” at the September 20-21 meeting, said Rubeela Farooqi of High Frequency Economics, although the next report on consumer price inflation also will be a key factor.

Still, she said “these data are not going to change the Fed’s view that policy needs to move to a restrictive stance over coming months.”

In July, there were more than 11 million job openings, or two for every job seeker.

– ‘Some pain’ –

US GDP contracted in the first two quarters of 2022, which is commonly viewed as a sign of a recession, but the robust job market defies that definition.

Companies have faced a labor shortage for months, prompting them to offer higher wages, which is in turn driving up prices. And there are signs firms are “hoarding” workers — holding onto seasonal employees for fear they might not be able to replace them later.

Fed officials have made it clear in repeated statements that they will continue to raise interest rates to cool the economy, even if monthly data show some signs of progress.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell hammered home this point last week at a conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, warning of “some pain to households and businesses,” as well as a “softer labor market.”

New data this week from payroll firm ADP showed private firms ratcheted back hiring in the month to 132,000.

“We think that these numbers suggest a shift to a more moderate pace of hiring,” ADP chief economist Nela Richardson said.

Firms of all sizes are trying “to read what has become a complex economic picture.”

But ADP data showed workers who left their jobs to find a new position saw a pay increase of more than 16 percent, compared to 7.6 percent gains for all workers over the past year.

AFP

Osinbajo Departs For US, To Meet Kamala Harris, Others

File photo of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo departing Nigeria.

 

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) on Wednesday morning jetted to the United States of America to seek global partnerships and support for Nigeria’s recently launched Energy Transition Plan.

According to a statement by the VP’s spokesman, Laolu Akande, Osinbajo will meet his American counterpart, Kamala Harris; World Bank Group, and other partners.

The trip is coming about one month after Osinbajo’s successful surgery.

Osinbajo is leading Nigeria’s Energy Transition Implementation Working Group on the US mission with meetings starting from September 1 to promote the plan and secure global support from the US government, the private sector, and other development partners.

Nigeria’s Energy Transition Plan launched last week is said to need at least $10 billion per annum above business as usual spending for effective implementation.

At the launch, the World Bank and a renewable energy organization – Sun Africa, pledged a sum of $1.5 billion each totaling an initial $3 billion investment to support the implementation of Nigeria’s Energy Transition Plan.

The Nigerian VP will also meet US Secretary of Energy, Jennifer Granholm; Secretary of Treasury, Janet Yellen; and President of World Bank Group, David Malpass; among others.

The Vice President’s delegation to the US will include Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed; Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola; Minister of Power, Abubakar Aliyu; Minister of Environment, Mohammed Abdullahi; Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva; amongst others.

Osinbajo is expected to return to Abuja early next week.

Police Parade 46-Year-Old Woman In Maiduguri For Kidnapping Children

The map of Borno, a state in Nigeria’s north-east region.

 

The police in Borno have paraded a 46-year-old mother of two for abducting three children in Maiduguri.

The police also paraded 58 other suspects who specialize in kidnappings and other crimes.

The suspected abductor, who claims she is indulging in the act for the first time, said she was lured into the act by one ‘Lady B’ in Lagos who promised to take her abroad and make her rich.

The suspect, Nsa Hensewa, said before embarking on the journey to Maiduguri, she was a businesswoman in Lagos and that she had lived in Maiduguri with her parents some 30 years back.

How I Withdrew From Studying Veterinary Medicine For Law – New NBA President

A file photo of Mr Yakubu Maikyau.

 

Newly inaugurated President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Yakubu Maikyau, SAN, has shared the story of his academic journey and the twist of fate that saw him ending up in the legal profession even though he was on a markedly different path initially.

Maikyau shared the story In his inaugural address as President of the NBA.

“I studied Physics, Chemistry and Biology in my A-level classes at the School of Basic Studies, Zaria. Never in my wildest thoughts or imaginations did I contemplate studying Law,” Maikyau said on Friday.

Based on his education foundation and qualification, he gained admission to study Veterinary Medicine at the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria.

After registering for the course, he would receive news that changed the trajectory of his life.

“About three weeks into my resumption in Veterinary Medicine, I was informed by my friend, Hassan Danjuma, that he saw my name on the admissions list for the Faculty of Law,” he said.

“He literally dragged me to the old Senate Building and pointed out my name on the list. I saw it and was completely taken aback and unsuccessfully tried so hard to convince Hassan that this was in fact news to me.”

That news was in fact true. Not only was his name on the master list but also in the list at the Faculty of Law.

Faced with the dilemma of having two options to pick from, he sought advice.

“I travelled to Sokoto to consult with my big brother figure, Mr. J. S. Magaji of blessed memory, who said to me, “if you can cope, Law is a more lucrative course than Veterinary Medicine,” he said.

He left Magaji with a clear course of action.

“Upon return to Zaria, I withdrew from Veterinary Medicine and re-registered as a law student with the encouragement of the then Dean of Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Professor Daniel Saror, who also promised to defer my admission to the following year, so that if I could not cope with Law, I could return to continue with Veterinary Medicine.”

He did not need to fall back on plan B and was full of praise to God, his parents and sister, who he says sacrificed everything for him and the men who played a role in shaping his education and future.

Maikyau said, “I owe a debt of gratitude to Professor Daniel Saror, late Mr. J. S. Magaji and late Senator Danladi Bamayi, my first employer and principal in chambers, with whom I worked for almost 13 years. Senator Bamayi’s sense of duty, discipline, honesty, respect for values, ethics, and standards helped in no small measure in moulding me into who I am, as a legal practitioner, a husband and a father.

“I know Professor Daniel Saror (who would have been here in person – he will be 81 in October), the late Mr. J. S. Magaji and the late Senator Danladi Bamayi, are proud of their advice and mentorship and are equally grateful to God to have had a hand in what turned out to be the nurturing of the seed of greatness God deposited in me.

“That we are here today, is more than enough proof that I never went back to study Veterinary Medicine. That I can rise to the peak of the profession of law, into which I was admitted by sheer providence (for I did not apply to study Law; I still do not know how my name appeared on that list), attain the rank of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and now the 31st President of the NBA, are all the work of the Almighty.

“Is there any impossibility with God? Certainly NONE! I give God Almighty, the Alpha and Omega, Omnipresent, Omniscience, Omnipotent, the ONLY WISE ONE, the ONE in whom the essence of His existence is in Himself, all the glory, honour and praise.”

 

Read the full speech below:

THE INAUGURAL ADDRESS OF THE 31ST PRESIDENT OF THE
NIGERIAN BAR ASSOCIATION, MR. YAKUBU CHONOKO
MAIKYAU, SAN, AT THE INAUGURATION OF THE 2022 – 2024
NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
Protocols
INTRODUCTION
That I, Yakubu Chonoko Maikyau, SAN is today, the 26th of August 2022,
standing before you as the 31st President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA);
the prestigious association of the only noble profession, the largest, most vibrant
and most influential Bar on the continent of Africa, is simply a function of the
grace of God Almighty. To HIM ALONE be all the glory, the honour and the
praise.
Family background
My late parents, Lt. Maikyau Chonoko and Mrs. Titi Maikyau, had no formal
education. Had my father not joined the Army, my late sister, Amina Maikyau,
and I may not have gone to school. I can recall my father saying to me as he sent
me off to the School of Basic Studies, Zaria in 1984, “any day you go hungry,
come home, whatever we have we will share”. My mother, amongst other trades,
sold firewood to support my education and as an undergraduate, I helped to split
the firewood for sale. My late sister on her part, after her National Certificate of
Education (NCE) suspended further education and took up a teaching
appointment to support the family and my education. She only went back to
school to graduate in 1994 – four (4) years after my call to the Bar in 1990. My
father passed on the 28th of January 1989, while I was in my final year in ABU
Zaria; my sister passed on the 10th of January 2005 and my mother, on the 1
st of
December 2019.
It was as though they all came into the world just for me as I do not have a
recollection of anything they did for themselves, but from the time I could
recognise and recall events, I can only remember all they did to raise and support
this boy, Yakubu. They were selfless towards me as they individually and
collectively invested in me. My father did not witness my graduation and eventual
call to the Bar and my sister did not live to see me become a Senior Advocate of
Nigeria. Coincidentally, today is the 11th anniversary of my swearing in as Senor
Advocate of Nigeria, which only my mum was privileged to witness on the 26th
of August 2011. I pay special tribute to all of them for their love, sacrifices,
support, prayers and for a godly upbringing. I am sure that, to the glory of God,
they look from heaven, proud of their boy and grateful for the privilege of being
part of the journey that culminated in this inauguration ceremony.

My Education
I studied Physics, Chemistry and Biology in my A-level classes at the School of
Basic Studies, Zaria. Never in my wildest thoughts or imaginations did I
contemplate studying Law. I gained admission to study Veterinary Medicine at
the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria. About three weeks into my
resumption in Veterinary Medicine, I was informed by my friend, Hassan
Danjuma, that he saw my name on the admissions list for the Faculty of Law. He
literally dragged me to the old Senate Building and pointed out my name on the
list. I saw it and was completely taken aback and unsuccessfully tried so hard to
convince Hassan that this was in fact news to me. I later confirmed that my name
was not only on the master list but also in the list at the Faculty of Law. Thereafter,
I travelled to Sokoto to consult with my big brother figure, Mr. J. S. Magaji of
blessed memory, who said to me, “if you can cope, Law is a more lucrative
course than Veterinary Medicine”. Upon return to Zaria, I withdrew from
Veterinary Medicine and re-registered as a law student with the encouragement
of the then Dean of Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Professor Daniel Saror, who
also promised to defer my admission to the following year, so that if I could not
cope with Law, I could return to continue with Veterinary Medicine.
I owe a debt of gratitude to Professor Daniel Saror, late Mr. J. S. Magaji and
late Senator Danladi Bamayi, my first employer and principal in chambers, with
whom I worked for almost 13 years. Senator Bamayi’s sense of duty, discipline,
honesty, respect for values, ethics, and standards helped in no small measure in
moulding me into who I am, as a legal practitioner, a husband and a father. I know
Professor Daniel Saror (who would have been here in person – he will be 81 in
October), the late Mr. J. S. Magaji and the late Senator Danladi Bamayi, are proud
of their advice and mentorship and are equally grateful to God to have had a hand
in what turned out to be the nurturing of the seed of greatness God deposited in
me.
That we are here today, is more than enough proof that I never went back to study
Veterinary Medicine. That I can rise to the peak of the profession of law, into
which I was admitted by sheer providence (for I did not apply to study Law; I still
do not know how my name appeared on that list), attain the rank of a Senior
Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and now the 31st President of the NBA, are all the
work of the Almighty. Is there any impossibility with God? Certainly NONE!
I give God Almighty, the Alpha and Omega, Omnipresent, Omniscience,
Omnipotent, the ONLY WISE ONE, the ONE in whom the essence of His
existence is in Himself, all the glory, honour and praise.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
I must recognise the contribution and support of my partners and colleagues at Y.
C. Maikyau and Co. This project afforded me the opportunity to see a side of
them that I probably may never have experienced. Their commitment, passion and sacrifices towards this aspiration, have been humbling. They have also
assured me that I do not have to worry about the office for the 2 years that I will
be steering the affairs of the Bar. My partners; Raphael Terfa, Nwabueze Obasiobi, Mohammed Adelodun; I am grateful for the support. I am also grateful to my
Associates and staff at the office for their tremendous support.
My campaign team was simply awesome. The Director General of the campaign,
Mr. Yemi Akangbe, who earned himself the aliases of “capacity”, “energy”,
“structural”, “intellectual”, “accommodating”, to mention just a few, drove the
process well. We saw the interplay of these attributes during the campaign. Mazi
Afam Osigwe SAN, “the Golden Boy”, was exceptional in his support; he
committed his time, resources and experience to support this aspiration. I am
grateful to my Nominators, Chief R. A. Lawal Rabana (my egbon) past NBA
General Secretary and Life Bencher and Mr. Aminu Sani Gadanya (the fine boy
from Kano), who found me worthy of nomination, for their trust and support. I
am grateful to my friend and call-mate, Sopriye Long Williams for deploying
his wealth of experience as Deputy Director General of the Campaign alongside
my younger brother, Paul Daudu. My profound gratitude goes to the rest of the
Campaign team: Murtala Kankiya; Sammie Somiari, SAN; Chinaecherem
Nwaubani; Laura Alakija; Aisha M. Hassan; Barbara Omosun; Olabamiji
Adeyeye; Rachael Osibu; Dressman Ebikebina; Auta Nyada; Henry
Barnabas; Yakubu Philemon; Isah Aliyu; Eva Amadi; Folarin Aluko; Hope
Anehmen; Jamiu Isiaka; Lere Fashola; Blessing Udofia-Poromon; Amaka
Uzuegbu; Ada Edozie; Adanma Isamade; Sameera Tabo; Godwin
Madubuko; Augustine N. Eseagwu; Nasir Salau; M. A. Magaji, SAN;
Adekunle Ojoh, SAN; all my friends and colleagues of the 1990 set of the
Nigerian Law School and a host of other friends and colleagues too numerous to
mention. I must however not fail to mention Mr. Kaka Lawan Shehu, the
Honourable Attorney General, Borno State for his unflinching support throughout
this election. Similarly, Yunus Ustaz, SAN; E. Y. Kura, SAN; Abdullahi
Yahaya, SAN; Abdul Mohammed, SAN; Chief (Mrs.) A. J. Offiah, SAN; Mr.
A. I. Ani, SAN; Offornze D. Amucheazi, SAN; Abdulwasiu Alfa; Zibril
Jimeta; Zibril S. Zibril (Chairman Bauchi), M. M. Maidoki, Haruna Yelma,
Hannatu Simon; Hajiya Altine; Mohammed Nuhu (Chairman Sokoto);
Lawan G. Hudu (Chairman Birnin Kebbi); M. T. Mohammed (Chairman
Kaduna); Usman Sule, SAN; Wada A. Wada, Ibrahim A. Nasarawa; Mal
Salisu; M. E. Osume; Zainab Bio and many others who were all very supportive
throughout the process. I am also grateful to our media, technical, publicity and
content creation teams – they worked tirelessly behind the scenes and drove our
campaign organization from the shadows – I am truly blessed to have had such a
formidable team behind me.
So many respected friends and senior colleagues took the time to offer their
personal endorsements of my candidacy. Words cannot convey the depth of my
gratitude or the value I ascribe to every one of these endorsements. Mama
Hairat Ade-Balogun, OON; Chief Anthony Mogboh, SAN; Anthony Mogboh, Jnr, SAN; President Paul Usoro, SAN; Mrs. Funke Adekoya, SAN;
Prince Lateef Fagbemi, SAN; Mallam Yusuf Ali, SAN; Mr. Adebayo
Adelodun SAN; Dr. Anthony Idigbe, SAN; Chief Paul Erokoro, SAN; J.S.
Okutepa, SAN; K. K. Eleja, SAN; Prof. Wahab Egewole, SAN; Ayuli
Jemide; Dr. Adekunle Ojo, SAN; Tobenna Erojikwe; Emeka Ozoani, SAN;
Tochukwu Maduka, SAN; Chukwuka Ikuazom, SAN; Abdul Mohammed,
SAN; Rafiu Kolawole; Mr. Dayo Idowu; Orji Agwu Uka; and a host of our
younger colleagues who flooded the airwaves with a barrage of their
endorsements which essentially translated into the victory we celebrate today.
Permit me again to extend my profound gratitude to:
(i) President Olumide Akpata for the privilege to serve under his
administration. This afforded me the opportunity to interact with members
of the National Executive Committee, with whom I enjoyed a wonderful
working relationship. I commend you again for the reformative leadership
you brought to the NBA, the laudable projects which my administration is
committed to build upon and for putting in place the process that led to the
successful hand over of the baton to my administration.
(ii) The ECNBA under the leadership of Mr. Richard Ayodele Akintunde
SAN for delivering free, fair and seamless elections culminating in the
emergence of this administration of the NBA.
(iii) Past Presidents of the NBA particularly Dame Priscilla Kuye, T. J. O.
Okpoko, SAN, Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN, Olisa Agbakoba, SAN,
His Excellency, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, Chief O. C. J. Okocha,
SAN, Chief Bayo Ojoh, SAN, J. B. Daudu, SAN, Okey Wali, SAN,
Austin Alegeh, SAN, A. B. Mahmoud, SAN and Paul Usoro, SAN, for
leaving a legacy that we can build on.
(iv) Candidates who ran for one office or the other – In all our travels across the
country, we did not record any incident. We moved around, consulted,
campaigned, participated in the election in good health and witnessed the
election to the end. Regardless of the outcome of the elections, we should
be reminded there is no amount of money anyone could have paid to enjoy
God’s mercies and protection as we travelled. I will be calling on you to
work with us for the greater good of the legal profession in Nigeria; the
very reason we all got into the race in the first place.
A few weeks after the election and precisely on the 10th of August 2022, I received
shocking news of the deaths of two of our colleagues who were very close to me
and to many of you; Mr. Nasiru Dangiri, SAN and Mr. Ogaga Emoghwanre,
who was the Secretary of the NBA Welfare Committee which I chaired. Ogaga
was also the Publicity Secretary of NBA, Benin Branch and a Personal Assistant
to President Olumide Akpata. He contested for the office of National Publicity
Secretary but lost to Habeeb Lawal. He was gracious in defeat, reached out to the
winner and joined all of us in the celebrations that followed. These unfortunate
losses are stark reminders of the transience of life and the mercies of God in our
lives. May their souls and those of our other departed colleagues, rest in peace
and may the Almighty God comfort their families and the NBA, Amen.
It is on this note that I call upon my big brother Chief J. K. Gadzama, SAN,
OFR, MFR to continue to be gracious in accepting the result of this election. I
equally extend a hand of fellowship and invite him, to join hands with the current
administration to deliver on the mandate of the Nigerian Bar Association to its
members and the Nigerian public. I must appreciate the sportsmanship displayed
by the DG of JK-Gadzama Campaign Team. Chief C. P. Oli, who called to
congratulate me. I similarly thank my big brothers, Mr. K. T. Turaki, SAN and
Mr. Mela Nunghe, SAN, (both close associates of Chief J. K. Gadzama) who
individually called to congratulate me and pledged their continued support for the
Bar under my administration. I am particularly grateful to Mr. Jonathan Gunu
Taidi, past General Secretary of NBA, who ran for the office with us, but
promptly called to congratulate me and paid a personal visit to my office to
celebrate with us. I already have his commitment to work with this administration
in delivering the needed dividends to our members.
THE TASK AHEAD AND MY CALL TO MEMBERS OF THE LEGAL
PROFESSION.
I had in my manifesto identified “service to the cause of justice”, as our primary
call as lawyers. The discharge of this duty will naturally lead to the socioeconomic and political change we desire in Nigeria; engender the recovery,
reformation and repositioning we need as a nation; improve the productivity,
prosperity and empowerment within the polity and guarantee the well-being of
the entire citizenry, lawyers inclusive.
We must not lose sight of the fact that the prosperity of the members of the legal
profession cannot be isolated from that of the larger society. To this end, it is the
responsibility of all members of the legal profession, individually and
collectively, to provide the desired leadership to the nation. To achieve this, the
Bar must earn the respect and confidence of the public and this can only be
secured by a Bar that conducts itself professionally with honor, respect, dignity
and integrity. This responsibility of the Bar to the Nation was underscored in the
quote attributed to Sir Adetokunbo Ademola, where he said that “the respect in
which the bar in any country is held is the best indicator of the freedom in that
country”. Conversely, the absence of freedom in a country is the best indicator
of either the complete absence of the Bar or the lack of respect for the Bar in that
country.
Consequently, distinguished colleagues, in taking on the task ahead, I call on all
members of the legal profession to do whatever we are lawfully permitted to do
to command respect as a Bar, because therein lies the freedom this country yearns for. To this end, service to the person of justice must be our primary motivation in the discharge of our responsibilities as members of the legal
profession wherever we may find ourselves; on the Bench, the Bar (official or
private), public service, private businesses, in our places of worship, or whatever
endeavour we may be engaged in. It is my firm belief that with the quality and
diversity of our members, many of whom populate constitutional/statutory
bodies, the legal profession is properly positioned to provide the leadership that
can turn around the fortunes of this nation for the better. Thus, the discharge of
the functions of these statutory bodies must be motivated solely by the need to
attain justice. I therefore call on our members in whatever capacity you currently
serve, to awaken to our responsibilities as socio-economic change agents, to put
our hands on the plough with our eyes fixed on the goal to deliver justice to the
Nigerian people and cultivate the greatness of this Nation under God.
STATE OF THE NATION
The Nigerian state is passing through perilous times. The insecurity in the nation
has reached an all-time high; no longer are we dealing with insecurity on the
fringes of the Nigerian territory, as nearly all parts of the country have
experienced and/or are experiencing one form of security breach or the other.
Attacks on military formations and killing of security personnel are now regular
occurrence. The Abuja-Kaduna train attack; the closure of Kaduna International
Airport due to security concerns; killing of innocent worshippers in Owo, Ondo
State; the rampaging activities of Boko Haram, terrorists, bandits, et al in the
Northern parts of Nigeria; kidnappings and the activities of elements described
as unknown gun men in the South East; the jail breaks including the recent
incident at the Kuje Correctional Centre, FCT; the attacks on the suburbs of the
FCT, within a radius of not more than 50 kilometers to the seat of the President
and the Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria; are to say the
least worrisome and distressing. The situation appears so overwhelming that it is
either that what is being done by the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) is too
negligible to be noticed, or nothing is being done at all- many Nigerians believe
that the latter is the position)
There has not been any time in this country when Nigerians have looked more to
the Bar as they do now, for a way out of the rather bleak situation, and they are
certainly looking in the right direction. We are the ones who, by the privilege of
our training and expertise, are positioned to ask the right questions, interrogate
the system and call those saddled with the responsibility of providing security for
the lives and properties of Nigerians, to account for their stewardship. Permit me
to borrow from a biblical expression and to say that; just as the entire world is
eagerly waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God, so are Nigerians eagerly
waiting for the discharge of the leadership responsibility and interventions of
the members of the legal profession. We have what it takes to precipitate the
leadership that will bring the succour and freedom Nigerians deserve and we
cannot afford to shirk from that responsibility.

Let me emphasise this point in this way; Nigeria and Nigerians have been so
terrorised, traumatised and their psyche pauperised by our present-day realities.
The dignity of the lives of Nigerians have come under severe attack by these and
many factors. What is left of this country, which cannot be emasculated in my
humble view, is the voice of the legal profession; a voice that derives its life and
strength from the person of justice and which cannot be caged or killed. This
voice must speak against the terror in the land and the hardship that has taken
over the lives of our people. This is the charge that my administration undertakes
to spearhead.
That is why what we saw at the just concluded conference where some of our
colleagues broke into the Pavillion for the distribution of conference materials,
destroyed the booths and carted away bags and other valuables, was most
unfortunate, highly despicable and totally unacceptable. What the world saw on
social media is not a representation of who we are as members of the legal
profession. We remain proud of the nobility of the profession, and we are
committed to conducting ourselves in the best traditions of the Bar with candour,
honour, dignity, integrity, and professionalism. What we saw fell short of this and
we have a duty to deal with that shameful conduct.
I hereby immediately, subject to the approval of NEC, setup a committee to be
chaired by Mr. Wale Fapohunda, SAN, Attorney General of Ekiti State, to
investigate the incident and identify all those who participated in that disgraceful
act with the view to reporting them to the LPDC.
In the next couple of weeks and months, the NBA under my leadership will take
steps and set in motion processes that will seek to interrogate government’s
investments in the security of this nation and the utilization of these investments
if any, to ascertain the reason(s) for what clearly appears to be a failure of
National Security. Our apparently ill-equipped security personnel are continually
being sacrificed notwithstanding what is known to be their patriotism, uncommon
courage, military expertise, tact, zeal, gallantry and determination to defend the
Nigerian people, their properties and the territorial integrity of this Nation.
This engagement, which must be carried out expeditiously, is necessary to,
amongst other things, generate discussions that will provide Nigerians with
sufficient information to guide them in making their choice of persons to occupy
elective offices in the upcoming general elections. While the NBA shall hold the
current and past leaderships to account (bearing in mind that government is a
continuum), we must ensure that no one seeking elective office leverages on the
failures of this or any administration, to gain the sympathy of Nigerians.
Nigerians must be satisfied, given the concrete realities of our nation, with the
practical solutions that are being proposed to deal with the current security,
economic and political challenges. Consistent with our duty to the people, we
cannot allow the nation to be misled, as Abraham Lincoln once said: “let the
people know the truth and the country will be safe”.

In the interim, I hereby call on the Federal Government of Nigeria, to show
demonstrable commitment to the protection of lives and properties of Nigerians
across the country. A situation where the elite guards of the Commander-in-Chief
will come under such humiliating and fatal attack as was recently reported,
amongst other similar incidences and experiences of the Nigerian military, leaves
much to be desired. I will however commend the security personnel in the field
of operation for doing so much with apparently so little.
THE 2023 GENERAL ELECTIONS
Besides the need to guarantee the security of the lives and properties of Nigerians
as they troop out to vote in the 2023 general elections, the ultimate outcome of
the election will largely depend on the interface between the Bench, the Bar and
the Political gladiators. As members of the Legal Profession, serving either on
the Bench or at the Bar, we owe Nigerians sincere and honest participation in the
process. We must do all that is legitimately within our abilities, motivated by the
desire to serve the course of justice, to ensure that the relevant laws and rules,
properly interpreted and applied, remain the guiding principles for our
involvement in the process.
While we shall stand with the Courts and do everything legal to protect the
integrity of the Bench against any form of intimidation by the political class, any
person or group of persons, we will not hesitate to call out and pursue disciplinary
action(s) against erring judicial officials. Similarly, members of the Bar who
misconduct themselves while participating in the resolution of electoral disputes
will face disciplinary action at the Legal Practitioners’ Disciplinary Committee
(LPDC) and the Legal Practitioners’ Privileges Committee (LPPC), where Senior
Advocates of Nigeria (SAN) are involved.
Our Association just conducted a fully online election of its national officers,
adjudged free, fair, transparent, credible and seamless. While about 62,000
members were verified and eligible to vote, 34,809 of our members voted in the
election. Eligible members cast their votes from across the world, from the
comfort of their homes, offices and on the go, using their computers, phones and
other electronic devices, while monitoring the progress in real-time. Members did
not have to congregate at any location to vote, thus, avoiding all the risks and
expenses associated with movements from one point to another and convergence
at any designated location.
I call on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the various
State Independent Electoral Commissions to emulate the NBA; to leverage on
technology in the conduct of future general elections with minimal or no exposure
of the electorate to insecurity, risks and other associated costs/expenses in the
process in addition to reducing of likelihood of electoral malpractice. I am
confident that, the insecurity situation will be contained and we shall regain
normalcy in the nation, notwithstanding, deployment of technology in all facets of our national life is not an option. It is the future of the world and we cannot be
left out of this future.
Finally on this point, the agitations in the polity as to the election processes;
choice of candidates and the extent of participation of the citizens in the political
space, have to my mind been largely fueled by what I see as the constitutional
limitation imposed on the Nigerian citizens by Section 221 of the Constitution of
the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended). This section essentially
prohibits any association other than a political party from canvassing for votes
for any candidate. In this respect, relevant sections of the Constitution make
sponsorship by political parties a requirement for eligibility to contest for elective
offices in Nigeria. These provisions have made participation by all classes of
persons or groups in Nigeria impracticable no matter their qualification,
experience and ability to garner support across the nation. The teaming youths
and women of this Nation, who constitute over 70% of the voting population, are
limited in their choice of leaders.
My administration will assiduously embark on awareness campaigns to advocate
for the liberalisation of the political space through constitutional amendments to
provide for independent candidature. I am persuaded that this is one way through
which majority of Nigerians can elect leaders of their choice based on
competence and merit.
The present status quo, where political parties conduct primaries for the election
of candidates through processes that are apparently marred by all forms of
irregularities, not the least, the compromise of delegates to Party conventions,
leave Nigerians with no option but to elect their leaders at the general election,
from the product of those otherwise tainted primaries. This is totally
unacceptable. Consequently, the NBA under my leadership will partner with
relevant government agencies and other stakeholders to ensure that the process
of electing our leaders is not limited to the current flawed system. Where the
candidates emerge faulty and corrupt primaries, the subsequent general election
simply becomes a charade.
WELFARE OF LAWYERS
I have deliberately at the onset, dwelt on some of the burning national issues
because the NBA exists within the context of the Nigerian State, and we must
reckon with our responsibility towards the survival of the nation even as we look
after ourselves as an Association.
At this point however, I would like to reiterate my commitment to sustain and
build on the welfare schemes and programmes of the immediate past
administration. Like I said in my manifesto, I will sustain the National Health
Insurance Scheme for lawyers, while offering free subscription to the scheme to
an additional 1000 members in each year of my administration. The life assurance
policy will be reviewed with the view to increasing the benefits. Free stamp for
members who pay their Bar Practicing Fees (BPF) on or before 31st March each
year will be sustained. We will also improve upon the current savings by the
NBA. I commend the administration of President Olumide Akpata for saving 1.5
billion Naira- the first in the history of the NBA and I am committed to going on
with the proposed constitutional amendment intended to protect this fund which
is used to backstop the access to credit programme. I have already commenced
discussions with financial institutions and other development partners for access
to grants and professional development funds to boost and strengthen the access
to credit/finance programme.
As Chairman of NBA Welfare Committee, I had committed to work to the last
day of the past administration and would have continued to do so under a new
administration if called upon. As it turns out, thanks to you our members, I am
now to serve you at a slightly higher capacity. I therefore make the following
commitments:
1. Within the first 60 days of my administration, we will collate 1000 names
from the 125 Branches of the NBA for the purpose of the free NBA – NHIS
GIFSHIP programme as promised in my manifesto. 50% of this number
will be spread between our colleagues of 1 – 7 years post call. Not less than
100 will be drawn from of our physically challenged colleagues. The
remaining number will be distributed amongst members based on the
criteria to be decided.
2. In line with my campaign promise, the subscription for the 1000 members
already on-boarded for the NBA – NHIS GIFSHIP programme shall be
renewed at the anniversary of their initial subscription to the Scheme.
3. Conference fees:
a. Lawyers 1 – 5 years post-call will pay 50% less the fee paid this year
for the AGC on condition that such members are in good financial
standing and have recorded not less than 70% participation in the CLE
programme of the NBA. For avoidance of doubt this should come to
NGN 7, 500 (for early bird registration), NGN 20,000 (for regular
registration) and NGN 40,000 (for late registration). Similar provisions
will in due course be made for other category of lawyers as our financial
position improves. My administration views conferences and
particularly the AGC as knowledge sharing opportunities and our
younger colleagues must be encouraged to take advantage of every such
opportunity.
b. Colleagues who are physically challenged will be registered for the
conference free of charge, subject to participation in not less than 70%
of the CLE programmes.
c. Aged colleagues of 70 years and above will be registered for the AGC
free of charge unless they choose to pay. We must keep our older
colleagues close and continue to engage with them so as to tap from
their wealth of experience
LAWYERS’ REMUNERATION
To demonstrate my administration’s commitment to improving the remuneration
of lawyers, I will constitute a Remunerations Committee to, amongst other things,
implement the recommendations of the NBA Remuneration (White Paper)
Committee as contained in the white paper submitted and accepted by the
National Executive Council at its meeting in Ilorin, Kwara State, on the 9th of
June 2022. I shall also liaise with the Honourable Attorney General and Minister
for Justice for the purpose of setting up the Legal Practitioners Remuneration
Committee LPRC as provided for under Section 15 of the Legal Practitioners Act
2007, with the view to incorporating the recommendations of the committee as
part of the Order which the LPRC may issue under the power conferred on it to
make orders regulating the charges of legal practitioners. This is to secure
enforceability of the recommendations by the Committee.
I shall constitute a renumeration committee within 21 days from today subject to
the approval of NEC.
LAW OFFICERS, LEGAL AID OFFICERS AND LAWYERS IN PUBLIC
SERVICE
In my manifesto, I identified the need for members of the legal profession to be
positioned in strategic sectors and offices, as a way of using some of our best
resources to drive the affairs of the state and introduce a culture of excellence and
respect for the rule of law in public service.
During the campaigns, I had interactions with law officers, legal aid officers and
lawyers in law enforcement agencies and have come to the understanding that
one of the most effective ways to reform this nation is through these distinguished
members of the legal profession, whose utilitarian value to the society has clearly
not been fully acknowledged and appreciated. We shall engage with relevant
authorities and stakeholders to recognise and invest in these members of the legal
profession by developing their capacities and adequately compensating them for
their services, which is often at great personal risk. The improvement of their
salaries, and emolument and for proper grade level placement at the time of
employment will be negotiated.
IN-HOUSE COUNSEL AND LAWYERS IN BUSINESS
In-house Counsel’s role in promoting the rule of law is often overlooked,
downplayed or misunderstood. As the conscience of corporate Nigeria, I
recognise the need to protect, support and strengthen the voice of our members
who work in these roles and who by virtue of their office drive policy and uphold
the corporate integrity of the Nigerian business. This function is key to our overall
economic growth and advancement. Therefore, the NBA under my administration
will engage more actively with these members and look forward to working with
them improving their participation and interactions within the association and
providing whatever backbone support they will require from the NBA.
NBA EMPLOYMENT BUREAU
As I promised during the electioneering campaigns, my administration will
interface with Government Ministries, Departments, Agencies and parastatals
both at the Federal, State and Local Government Levels, Including the Armed
Forces, Police, Civil Defence, Immigration, Customs and other organizations, to
seek placements for our members. I shall constitute this Committee within 21
days from today subject to the approval of NEC. The Committee shall be the
NBA Employment Committee otherwise known as NBA Employment Bureau.
NBA LAW FIRM/INSTITUTIONAL MENTORSHIP PARTNERSHIP
My promise for law firm/institutional mentorship will remain foremost in the
agenda of my administration. In addition to the funding by the NBA and law
firms, the professional development financing expected from our interactions
with financial institutions will be deployed for the take-off of this programme.
This mentorship programme will equally serve as a means of preparing our
colleagues for employment and entrepreneurship as indicated above. I will within
21 days from today constitute a Law Firm/Institutional Mentorship Committee
which shall among other things, develop general policy and strategy for
engagement; develop the scope, duration and cycles of mentorship program;
develop the criteria for participation (for both law firms and interns); design of
program outline including such details as stipends, program expectations and
deliverable and the obligations of firms to the mentees and vice versa and the
supervisory role of the NBA.
CAPACITY BUILDING AND CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL
DEVELOPMENT
At the risk of sounding biased, I make bold to say that no nation develops without
a deliberate investment in its human capital, with special attention to the legal
professionals. There must, at the core of any meaningful development in any
nation, be a preponderance of purposeful and qualitative legal professionals who
will provide the legal frameworks borne out of a progressive mindset for the
implementation of the programmes and policies of government at all levels. This
will require a deliberate commitment to developing the legal profession’s human
capital needed to provide specialised services at different level of governance.
Nigeria currently has about 140, 000 lawyers on the Roll of which 1,500 were
recently admitted, thus adding to the growing number. Let me use this
opportunity to welcome our newest colleagues into the profession and to assure
you that, notwithstanding the challenges we face, the legal profession remains the
only noble profession and you should be proud of the privilege of being a part of
it. As the seniors offer to provide purposeful guidance and support for your
professional growth, I admonish you to make yourselves available to learn, work
hard and conduct yourselves according to the ethics of the profession.
My administration is committed to sustaining the capacity development drive of
the last administration. I am persuaded that for us to remain globally competitive
in this era of digital disruption, we must keep building our capacities in order to
deliver qualitative service that meets the present day demands. We will also seek
to close the knowledge gap between lawyers in major urban centers and lawyers
in sub-urban areas with a view to generally improving and standardizing the
quality of legal service delivery.
PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINE
As noted earlier, the only voice which cannot be annihilated by any form of
terrorism, highhandedness or impunity is that of the Legal Profession. This voice
can only be heard and be impactful where, as members of the Legal profession,
we conduct ourselves professionally, honestly, with dignity and respect. This is
the only way we can elicit the confidence of the Nigerian Public as we step out
to discharge our responsibilities as agents of change. It is the preponderance of
the professionalism we exhibit in dealing with our clients, local or foreign, that
will help generate the required public confidence in us and restore the Bar to its
pride of place in the scheme of things within the country and beyond. To this end,
we must therefore get involved in regulating the conduct of our members and
bringing erring colleagues to book. My administration will continue with the
ongoing interactions between the NBA and the Body of Benchers (BoB) in
fashioning out the appropriate regulatory mechanism for the Legal Profession in
Nigeria. We will also ensure that the outcome of these interactions are properly
reflected in the proposed amendment of the Legal Practitioners Act (LPA)
submitted to the National Assembly and support the passage of the Bill into law.
While on this subject, let me speak on the recent development bordering on
alleged professional misconduct, involving the Law Firm of no less a personality
than our revered legal icon, Chief Wole Olanipekun SAN, OFR. The issue which
I suppose everyone here is familiar with, began with an email sent by Adekunbi
Ogunde, a partner in Wole Olanipekun & Co., to companies known as Sapiem S.
A. and Sapiem Contracting Nigeria Limited, clients of Mr. H. Odein Ajumogobia,
SAN, OFR. Arising from this, the NBA on 20th of July 2022 filed a complaint to
the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee (LPDC) against Adekunbi
Ogunde – No.: BB/LLPC/901/2022. On the basis of this complaint, President Mr.
Olumide Akpata, wrote a letter to Chief Wole Olanipekun, OFR, SAN, being the
Chairman, Body of Benchers, requesting him to recuse himself as the Chairman
of that August Body, on the premise that the petition against Adekunbi Ogunde
had requested the LPDC to “consider whether the partners of the Firm of Wole
Olanipikun& Co are not liable to be disciplined by this august body seeing that
the Respondent has the ostensible authority to act as a partner and indeed acted
for and on behalf of the said Firm”.
Apparently, in response to the request by the NBA, the Body of Benchers has
exonerated the partners of the law firm of Wole Olanipekun & Co. from
complicity in the alleged act of misconduct. In a letter dated 19th August, 2022,
addressed to Adelani Ajibade, Esq, of Wole Olanipekun & Co., the Body of
Benchers conveyed its decision on this issue “with regards to the Applicant’s
prayer to also consider whether the partners of the firm of Wole Olanipekun &
Co are not liable to be disciplined, I hold the humble view that since there is no
evidence to show that the Respondent indeed acted with the knowledge and
consent of the principal partners, especially with the partner’s express and
constant denial of the content of Exhibit 1 to the effect that the Respondent
acted without the authority or consent of the principal partners or the firm, I
cannot situate that angle of the Applicant’s prayer to both the act and the rules.
Accordingly, I see no merit in recommending further investigation against the
partners of the firm of Wole Olanipekun & Co. I so hold”.
My attention was also drawn to an action instituted at the High Court of the
Federal Capital Territory, Abuja; Suit No.: FCT/HC/CV/2571/2022 between
Lady (Barr.) ChidinmaUdebuani v. Body of Benchers & 7 Ors, seeking
Declaratory and Injunctive reliefs. Other than to restate these facts as above, I
know like everyone here, not to make any comments on the substance of both the
complaint before the LPDC and the pending Suit before the FCT High Court.
Suffice it however to say that my administration will not under any guise ignore,
overlook or sweep under the carpet, any alleged act of professional misconduct
brought to my attention against any member of the legal profession, not minding
his age at the Bar and status in the profession. I must add that, while the Rules of
Professional Conduct must be applied to all without any form of discrimination
whatsoever, the level of adherence/observance of the rules expected of lawyers
and the corresponding scrutiny on their conducts in cases of alleged breach of the
Rules is higher for Senior Lawyers.
It is important to emphasise that how these matters are eventually resolved by the
LPDC and the Court, will go a long way in determining the continued relevance
of the Bar, the confidence in which the Nigerian people will hold the legal
profession and the eventual freedom which Nigeria will or will not enjoy. Put
differently, the resolution of these matters one way or the other, will determine
whether members of the legal profession in Nigeria either individually or through
the instrumentality of the NBA, will be in position to provide the required
leadership for the recovery, reformation and repositioning of Nigeria, to bring
about the freedom we all need.

Finally, on this issue and subject however to the subsistence of the petition and
suit abovementioned, there are many voices that should have been heard but were
not heard specifically on this matter. In my humble view, given the important
critical nature of this issue to the continued relevance of the Bar as earlier noted,
the silence of these leading lights in the profession, who wield enormous amount
of influence not only amongst the members of the legal profession but also the
Nigerian public at large, is already hurting the profession and ditto the Nigerian
public. Let me add that it does not matter what their views are on the matter, they
simply owe the profession and the Nigerian public a duty to not only wade into
the matter, but also be seen to have done so. As I stated earlier, the ultimate
outcome will either make or mar the legal profession in Nigeria.
My administration shall therefore maintain a purposive approach to this issue
seeing that our responsibility transcends the interest of any individual or group of
persons. In a paper titled “Legal Practice as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria”
delivered at the induction programme organised by the Body of Senior Advocates
of Nigeria, in 2018, Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN, OFR referred to the statement
by Sir Christopher Sapara Williams on the role of a lawyer to his nation where he
said “the legal practitioner lives for the direction of his people and the
advancement of the cause of his county”. On the conduct of Senior Advocates
of Nigeria, Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN, had this to say: “We must bear in mind
that a Senior Advocate of Nigeria is first and foremost a lawyer, subject to and
bound by the Rules of Professional Conduct for the Legal profession in Nigeria.
Therefore, he is under a duty, not only to scrupulously subscribe to all the rules
of professional ethics, in the profession, but also clinically comply with them.
Be that as it may, this time around, as a Senior Advocate, he is acting as a
leader, a role model, a mentor, an exemplar, a cynosure, a teacher, as well as a
shepherd. In effect, he is under a duty to lead by example.”
Flowing from above, there is no sacrifice too big for a lawyer to make in the
overall interest of the profession and the nation. My administration will lead the
awareness or re-awareness campaign to bring members of the legal profession to
this place of national responsibility.
INDEPENDENCE OF THE JUDICIARY
Our judges are firstly members of the Legal Profession thus, the quality of our
Bench is derived from the quality of the Bar. As Ministers in the Temple of
Justice, we at the Bar have the duty of advocating for the welfare of the Bench as
a way to guarantee the incorruptibility expected of this group of legal
professionals.
The fact that the salaries and allowances of judges and justices in Nigeria was last
reviewed in 2008, notwithstanding our concrete economic realities is the best
proof that there is, either a lack of understanding of the critical nature of the role
of judiciary in the development and stability of any nation (and the need for this
arm of government to be incorruptible) or there simply had been a deliberate effort to pauperise the judiciary in order to perpetuate impunity and corruption in
the land. Little wonder none of the Presidential Candidates who attended the
Opening Ceremony of the just concluded AGC on the 21st August, 2022, spared
any thoughts on Rule of Law and the Judiciary. If this is indicative of their scale
of priorities; the importance they accord to the rule of law and justice delivery,
we do have cause for serious concern. It would seem to me in their assessment,
the rule of law does not qualify as a top item on their agenda for good governance.
This, in my view, gives us cause for serious concern.
That an action, had to be filed in Court to compel government to look into and
improve the welfare of Judges and Justices, is all the reason why it will be safe to
infer that there is a deliberate ploy to emasculate and pauperise the Courts and by
so doing strangulate the course of justice in this nation. The Suit No
NIC/ABJ/142/2022 before the National Industrial Court of Nigeria between Chief
Sebastine Hon, SAN v. National Assembly & Ors., was determined on the 15th of
July, 2022. It would have been laughable if it were not pathetic, that a nation
which truly desires to develop or recover itself from the brinks of failure,
particularly in the face of our present-day realities, will allow for a matter of this
nature to be ventilated in Court.
The recent unprecedented complaint by Justices of the Supreme Court about the
lack of basic needs and support in the discharge of their constitutional duties is
the most ridiculous display of the neglect that the judiciary of this nation had been
subjected to over the years. This is further proof that no effort whatsoever is being
made towards redressing the situation. Notwithstanding, in a rare but not
surprising display of strength of character, the Supreme Court in Suit No.:
SC/655/2020 declared unconstitutional, null, void and of no effect whatsoever,
Executive Order 10 which was meant to seemingly help uplift the welfare of
Judges and Justices. It held that “the President overstepped the limit of his
powers” and that “the country is run on the basis of the Rule of Law”.
Like I said earlier, looking after the welfare of the judiciary which is in a manner
incomparable to other arms of government must be the default mode for any
government that seeks development no matter how minimal. Implicit in such
default mode, is respect for the process of the administration of Justice, that will
ensure that persons who went through trials and are convicted, and after
unsuccessful appeals up to the Supreme Court must be allowed to serve the
consequences of their culpability as found by the courts. Not to let such convicts
off the hook in a manner that clearly undermines the judiciary and the
administration of justice, and which also contradicts the acclaimed fight against
corruption by the government. While I respect the constitutional powers of the
President to extend mercy to such convicts, such must be exercised judiciously
having regard to the need to build the right national mindset that will aid the
administration of justice. The apparent lack of respect for the decisions of our
courts is a direct function of the several decades of neglect of the judiciary as an
institution of government. The morale of the officers of the agencies of government who worked tirelessly in many cases under great risks to investigate,
collate evidence, prosecute these matters is dampened, leading to lackadaisical
attitude towards the efforts to fight the menaces that have bedevilled us as a
nation.
My administration will not only continue with the actions which seek essentially
to protect the dignity of the judiciary for the proper discharge of its constitutional
functions and duties, we will seek engagement with government and other
stakeholders in ensuring that immediate measures are taken to guarantee proper
remuneration for Judges and Justices in service and for their comfort upon
retirement. We will seek implementation of the reforms recommended at the
Justice Sector Summit held on 25th January 2022 as organised by the NBA and
the Justice Research Institute (JRI) in collaboration with the Konrad Adenauer
Foundation, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the
Justice Reform Project (JRP).
On its own part, I implore the judiciary to make its accounting books open and
remain accountable to the Nigerian people for whom justice is being dispensed
by the courts.
INSTITUTIONAL AND GOVERNANCE STRUCTURE
In line with my commitment to setting up and supporting a functional secretariat,
my administration will promptly constitute with the approval of the National
Executive Council (NEC) the Appointment and Renumeration Committee for the
appointment of the Executive Director, the recruitment of heads of departments
and other staff in accordance with section 11 of the NBA Constitution, 2015 (as
amended in 2021).
LEGAL EDUCATION REFORM
The current curriculum of legal education in Nigeria is out of touch with modern
realities. In order to fully exploit and unleash the potentials of lawyers as
catalysts for change, particularly the socio-economic and political transformation
of the nation, we need to look differently and more creatively into the training of
Nigerian legal workforce of the future. As promised in my manifesto, the starting
point for my administration will be to draw from the 2007 Funke Adekoya Report
on the Reform of Legal Education in Nigeria (commissioned by the NBA) and
the 2008 Funke Adekoya Report on the Reform of Legal Education in Nigeria
(Commissioned by the Council of Legal Education) together with other valuable
resources to develop an NBA legal education framework that will act as the
thought regulatory document for all discussions by the NBA on the subject. The
legal education framework policy will act as the guide document for all NBA
representatives on the Council of Legal Education.
Our administration will work with the Council of Legal Education (CLE), the
National Universities Commission (NUC) and Faculties of Law in Universities,
in fulfiling the provisions of the NBA Constitution with respect to the
Association’s role in the advancement of Legal Education in Nigeria. We will
work to develop and ensure the implementation of a legal education curriculum
that will cause the required transformation in the minds of the new breed of
lawyers, leading to the inevitable prosperity of the members of the profession and
the entire nation.
NBA SECTIONS AND FORA
Beyond providing a platform for professional and social advancement of the Bar,
the NBA Sections and Fora are veritable resource bases for policy
conceptualisation and formulation of public and private sector initiatives. As a
member of the NBA Section on Legal Practice (SLP), I have witnessed the
tremendous intellectual discourse and conversations at conferences and seminars
organised by the Sections. Similarly, the NBA Section on Public Interest and
Development Law (NBA-SPIDEL) has been vibrant in public interest advocacy
and litigation, whilst the NBA Section on Business Law (SBL) remains actively
involved in engendering the professional development of commercial lawyers.
In order to facilitate effective interactions between the NBA and these fora, as
well as support their respective investments in our colleagues, my administration
will offer office spaces to all fora to ensure physical presence at the NBA House
in Abuja.
RULE OF LAW AND THE ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE
I take it for granted that all lawyers know that the freedom in any society or
community is bench marked by the level of respect for the rule of law in that
Society. As such, the Nigerian Bar must be known for its transparency, integrity
and care for the Nigerian people, by speaking up boldly for the freedom of the
people of Nigeria. In recent times, the voice of the NBA has regained
considerable attention and respect; this tempo must be sustained if we are to
restore respect for the Bar. Our administration will therefore continue to promote
the rule of law, advocate for the protection of human rights; champion law
reforms and protect the integrity and independence of the judiciary.
ELECTORAL REFORMS
The NBA has come a long way in terms of the conduct of elections and the
electioneering process. It is remarkable to see how we transitioned from a
delegate system to universal suffrage. Even more remarkable is how we
transitioned from the traditional ballot process to electronic voting. In spite of
these improvements and having gone through the process myself, I find that it is
onerous and, in several regards, absolutely unsustainable. Our administration will
review the electoral guidelines to improve the electoral process, cut down on costs
incurred by candidates and the risks associated with frequent travels. I shall
within 21 days from today, set up an Electoral Reforms Committee subject to the
approval of NEC. This committee shall be chaired by Mr. E. Y. Kura, SAN.
CONCLUSION
I would like to conclude by saying that BOLD TRANSITONS; the chosen theme
for this year’s AGC is one that I find apposite.
This administration is nothing if not bold; bold in its election, constitution and
approach; bold in its aspirations and execution of its goals; bold in its
engagements and all the interactions that have led up to this moment. We have
made some bold declarations here today; we will boldly pursue and deliver them.
We will boldly confront all the issues that have bedevilled our profession and our
nation; from bad governance to insecurity, corruption and impunity; and to
dwindling national pride. We will join hands, speak truth to self (the NBA) and
to power, and where necessary commence actions and do whatever it takes to
change our trajectory and reverse our fortunes.
I therefore invite you, learned friends at the Bar to come on this journey with us,
to boldly confront the issues that have plagued our profession; tear down the walls
of division, raise up the fallen standards and jointly disavow every unethical,
unprofessional and sectional thought and action that has kept us from moving
forward and achieving our true potential.
We no longer have time to be mediocre, fearful or indecisive. We will, together,
take decisive, deliberate and calculated steps to move into the bold new world
that awaits us.
Ladies and gentlemen, the best is often saved for the last. I must at this juncture,
publicly express my profound gratitude to His Excellency the Governor of Kebbi
State, Senator Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, who turned out to be the brother I never
had. As Governor, he would travel to Zuru to visit my mum, spend time with her
in her small abode; make so many provisions for her particularly during festive
periods. My younger daughter who once saw the bundles of wrappers the
Governor brought for her grandmother, suggested that her grandmother could
open a shop to start selling wrappers. By the way you treated our mother, you
honoured me in ways that no one in public position had ever done. You severally
visited her in the hospital when she had a surgery about a year before she passed;
on the day of her demise, you immediately flew into Abuja from Kebbi after
leaving the previous day; you attended her funeral service and stood by her grave
when her body was committed to mother earth. I said all of these to say that I
acknowledge you today not as a Governor but as my older brother who is here to
represent the family, particularly our dear mother. At this point, I should
acknowledge my older sister, Dr. Zainab Shinkafi-Bagudu, who is standing
election for President-Elect of the Union for International Cancer Control
(UICC), the umbrella body for cancer organisations globally. I wish you success
and pray that the Almighty God will continue to guide you as you work for the
advancement of global health and wellbeing.
My Pastors – Pastor Andy Osakwe, Senior Pastor Summit Bible Church, Rev.
Tokunbo Adejuwon, the National Director Rhema Bible Training Centre and
Pastor Olu Adetomiwa, my younger brother. I thank you all for being available
to guide me, morally and spiritually and for this, I remain grateful. My friends,
Charles Bala, Prof. Zachariah Tanko, Lateef Olaniyan, Nasir Salau,
Omokayode Dada, Wole Agunbiade, SAN, Honourable Sunny Marshall,
Suleyman Shelleng and the rest of you, I could never repay your kindness,
encouragement and support – thank you!
That I am being inaugurated as the leader of the Bar today is due to the peace and
support I enjoy at home, thanks to the Grace of God and the love, support and
understanding of the one woman that God has blessed me with as a wife. Indeed,
he that finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favour from the Lord. Through
the days and weeks of travels and late nights; through the physical and emotional
absence and the many inconveniences, Zainab never murmured nor complained.
She always bade me farewell and offered prayers for my safe return. She is simply
my haven. Same goes for our Children, Israel Danmanya, Princess Sarah, King
David and Queen Esther – our blessings!
To all our members across the branches, I will be a President for all and will do
my utmost to build a Dynamic Bar where the interests of our members are
accommodated and protected. So, help me God.

Thank you for your attention.
Yakubu Chonoko Maikyau, SAN
President, Nigerian Bar Association.

Fernandes Sinks Southampton As Man Utd Maintain Revival

Manchester United's Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes (C) scores his team's first goal past Southampton's Irish goalkeeper Gavin Bazunu during the English Premier League football match between Southampton and Manchester United at St Mary's Stadium in Southampton, southern England on August 27, 2022. (Photo by Adrian DENNIS / AFP)
Manchester United’s Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes (C) scores his team’s first goal past Southampton’s Irish goalkeeper Gavin Bazunu during the English Premier League football match between Southampton and Manchester United at St Mary’s Stadium in Southampton, southern England on August 27, 2022. (Photo by Adrian DENNIS / AFP)

 

Manchester United maintained their revival as Bruno Fernandes clinched a hard-fought 1-0 win at Southampton on Saturday.

Erik ten Hag’s side sat bottom of the Premier League after losing their opening two games against Brighton and Brentford.

But United have recovered from that embarrassing start to secure successive league victories for the first time since February.

Fernandes netted with a composed strike early in the second half and the Portugal midfielder’s first goal this season lifted United into sixth place ahead of the rest of the weekend’s matches.

Ten Hag named the same starting line-up that defeated Liverpool 2-1 on Monday, meaning unsettled star Cristiano Ronaldo and club captain Harry Maguire were both on the bench.

Ronaldo, keen to leave Old Trafford before the transfer window closes on September 1, was largely anonymous when he came on for the last 20 minutes.

Casemiro helped United close out the win as the Brazil midfielder made his debut in a 10-minute substitute appearance following his move from Real Madrid.

United were some way short of the intensity and quality that inspired their win against Liverpool.

But they showed the grit so badly lacking in the first two games as they kept Southampton at bay after Fernandes’ goal.

Ten Hag will be pleased that Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez stood firm at centre-back, rewarding his decision to keep Maguire on the sidelines.

It took an incredible combination of superb goalkeeping and last-ditch defending to stop United taking the lead midway through the first-half.

When Southampton failed to clear a cross, Gavin Bazunu had to scramble to block Anthony Elanga’s shot at the far post.

In the ensuing melee, Christian Eriksen looked certain to score but Kyle Walker-Peters blocked his shot on the line before Fernandes saw his goalbound strike repelled by Armel Bella-Kotchap.

Bella-Kotchap should have made United pay for those misses when a corner fell to the Saints defender, but he somehow contrived to shoot high into the stands from close-range.

Che Adams couldn’t generate enough power to beat David De Gea after making a perfectly-timed run behind the flat-footed United defence.

Scott McTominay’s drive tested Bazunu early in the second half, while Bella-Kotchap made a superb tackle to stop Elanga as he prepared to shoot after bursting through on goal.

Although United were never dominant, they conjured an impressive move to break the deadlock in the 55th minute.

A flurry of passes scythed through the Southampton midfield and Diogo Dalot curled a cross towards Fernandes, who guided a fine volley past Bazunu from just inside the area.

Southampton pushed for an equaliser but they were frustrated when a strong penalty appeal was rejected by VAR after McTominay handled as he challenged Adams for a high ball.

De Gea preserved United’s slender lead with a reflex save from Joe Aribo’s close-range header, with Walker-Peters nodding the rebound over.

Bella-Kotchap blazed over and Sekou Mara shot wide as Southampton wasted their chance to deny United victory.

AFP

Decolonizing Ignorance and Stereotypes: A Review of Burying The Ghosts of Dead Narratives

Soonest_Nathaniel_Burying the Ghosts of Dead Narratives

 

By Paul Liam

The concept of decolonization in African literature is rooted in the attempt by pioneer modern African poets and scholars to decolonize the minds of Africans against the background of the barbaric narratives of European exploiters and colonizers who painted the continent as a jungle of apes and barbarians lacking in civilization.

African poets, therefore, sought to reeducate Africans about their histories, cultures, and traditions as a way of helping them to regain their lost self-esteem and humanity. They did this through poetry, fiction, drama, and criticism. This ideological drive was heralded by the African literary philosophy known as Negritude.

The consumption of the negative narratives on Africa by European and western readers ensued in the establishment of a permanent false image of Africa and Africans in their consciousness and sub-consciousness, as a people without civilization and humanity.

Several years after colonialism, the story hasn’t changed much as Africans are still considered second-class humans by Europeans and Westerners despite the fact that their ancestors claimed to have brought civilization to Africa against the historical evidence of Africa’s rich civilization and epistemology, they have perpetually been unable to unlearn the false histories they were nurtured with.

Several decades and centuries after their offsprings continue to interact with Africa within that narrow prism created by those racist and Eurocentric travelogues and narratives.

Well, we cannot deny the legacies of debasement, exploitation, and continuing imperialism by European and western establishments in Africa.

African poets like Gabriel Okara, Christopher Okigbo, Wole Soyinka, Leopold Sengor,OusmaneSembène,Abioseh Nicol, Kwesi Brew, Frank Parkes, John Pepper Clark, Lenrie Peters, George Awoonor Williams (Kofi Awoonor), Mbella Sonne Dipoko, Michael J.C. Echeruo, and OkogbuliWonodi and several others employed the instrumentality of poetry in conscientising Africans to take pride in their Africanness and liberate themselves from the clog of mental slavery occasioned by colonialism.

Consequently, Soonest Nathaniel has returned to that literary tradition with his collection, Burying the Ghost of Dead Narratives, in an ambitious attempt to decolonize the minds of his readers, but his readers this time around are not Africans or Nigerians, but Europeans and Westerners, many of whose perception of Africa and Africans is shrouded in deep ignorance and stereotypes harvested from a backlog of warp colonial history.

It is paradoxical that this decolonization project is enabled by Britain, through the British Council. Cultural exchange programmes and dialogue are key in the pursuit of intercultural relations and dialogue, especially in a world that has become a ‘global village’.

Soonest Nathaniel’s collection is an exemplifier of the functional use of art and in particular, poetry as an instrument of socio-cultural appropriation and dialogue.

The collection does not hide its intention to educate an external audience about Africa and in many instances, about Nigeria. The exogenous motif of the collection is telling of the underlining ideology behind the poems.

Using a didactic and prosaic style which is synonymous with all literature with an agenda to instruct, he teaches his audience about Africa, sometimes using satire and humor to conceal the gravity of his messages.

Central to the messages in the collection is the notion of the single story that westerners have of Nigeria and Africa in general. In Burying The Ghost of Dead Narratives, we encounter subtle yet lacerating derision of the ignorance of westerners of Nigeria and Africa at different levels in a postmodern world.

Thus, this collection is solid in its objective of debunking the perversion that emanates from stereotypes in a sense akin to what ChimamandaNgoziAdichie regards as the ‘danger of a single story’.

Single stories all over the world are products of limited consciousness enabled by ignorance and sometimes the unwillingness to unlearn prejudices that fuel ignorance and stereotypes.

Understandably, unlearning can be difficult as it humbles and puts the individual in an uncomfortable position of having toadmit either to themselves or to others of their weaknesses. So, how do you teach an unwilling learner about your country and people?

Nathaniel tells us to invoke metaphors whether dead or alive to renegotiate our perception of each other particularly through new narratives that speak to our shared values and humanity.

Soonest Nathaniel is one of Nigeria's leading poets.
Soonest Nathaniel is one of Nigeria’s leading poets.

 

To bury the ghost of dead narratives implies that we should put aside those stereotypical assumptions that hinder us from fostering genuine friendship and intercultural relations between the continent of Europe and Africa.

Dead narratives have divided us for far too long and to create new narratives of trust and mutual respect, we must tell positive stories about ourselves, our country, and our continent.

This supposition is corroborated by many of the poems in the collection. For example, in the poem, “Africa is Not a Country”(p.15) the poetic persona attempts to debunk the stereotypes about Africa when he says in the first stanza that,

Africa is not a country at the edge of old stories

Lingering between exploitation and aid.

Not a slaughterhouse nor a shrine

Where children’s bones are crushed

Into fine powder to be made into potions

In a bid to sate the protein needs of dying fathers.

The poem, aside from debunking the stereotypes about Africa being a country, and AIDS, and diseases and, goes further to illustrate some historical context about the real Africa and its glorious heritage. The fourth stanza of the poem is instructive as it provides deep posers for reflection,

No! she is not poor.

She provides for them all both high and small.

In her barns are roots, tubers, cereals and nuts.

In her banks are diamonds, platinum, gold,

uranium, bauxite, steel, copper

aluminum and coal,

there’s great wealth in the depths of her soul.

There is no favoured approach to understanding

the bondage from which she has risen,

surely, not through coloured-prism

of flattery.

We cannot undo the hours,

but even in the heart of darkness,

her light has found a place to bloom;

let the forbidden conversation find a tribe.

In the poem, “I am the other Nigeria” (10), the persona performs the same duty as in the poem “Africa is Not a Country.” He debunks the stereotypes about Nigeria in a creative way that seeks to appeal to the reader rather than castigate the offenders being addressed in the poem.

He highlights the global feats accomplished by Nigerians indicating that Nigeria and Nigerians are not defined by the stereotypes ascribed to them by the west. The achievements by Nigerians across fields of endeavour is projected as being the real Nigeria.

The poem could be regarded as a patriotic tribute to a country vilified by negative narratives because of the actions of a few citizens in the face of overwhelming evidence of exceptional brilliance and valor.

The first stanza of the poem summarises the functionality and can-do spirit of the Nigerians,

not the one on page 419 of the history book,

but the one in the next chapter where you’re yet to take a look.

The one for who impossibility is forbidden, the fractured frame

still holding immaculate pictures.

The one who knows water can be cruel

and the earth is not always a grave;

the one who understands that local hands can build global brands

and parallel line may meet and agree.

In his collection, Soonest Nathaniel urges us to put aside those stereotypical assumptions that hinder the fostering of new connections for mutual benefits.

 

In the “How to bury the Ghosts of Dead Narratives” (p.29), the persona talks about the need to bury the paste and embrace the new realities staring us in the face. He alludes to the paraphernalia that accompanies physical deaths and burial procession in Nigeria which he opines are not necessary for burying the ghosts of dead narratives.

He instructs on what should be done instead in stanza seven of the poem, he enjoins the mourners not to make light of the trauma in the tales being buried.

There should be poetry and loud music at the wake,

Tell jokes but don’t make light of the trauma

These tales have wreaked.

And in conclusion, in the poem “The New Story”(p.30), the persona in a reflective mood reconciles the past with the present in a bid to find peace and closure, he seeks a new beginning after burying the ghosts of dead narratives. He remarks in the first stanza of the poem thus,

It is not about what your fathers did to us,

nor is it about what our sons did to yours;

it is a chorus chanted

after the rooster regained her voice,

a tale told from the finish line—

where the earth

has annulled her contracts with neglect.

This is a fine collection that speaks to the essential issues of our humanity. We need to talk about them more openly and with the genuine intention to heal and move on. So, let us bury the ghost of dead narratives and weave new narratives of love and humanity.

Tinubu Govt Will Replicate Borno, Lagos ‘Wonders’ In Nigeria – Shettima

A photo combination of APC vice presidential candidate, Senator Kashim Shettima and the party’s flag.

 

Vice-Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress in the 2023 elections, Kashim Shettima, on Monday, said the government of APC Presidential Candidate, Bola Tinubu, will replicate the “wonders” in Borno and Lagos states if elected president in 2023.

Shettima, a former Borno governor, also hit ‘pretentious politicians’ at the opening ceremony  of the 2022 Nigerian Bar Association’s Annual General Conference held at the Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos.

The conference with the theme ‘Bold Transitions’ began on Monday and will run until August 26.

Shettima spoke on a panel session immediately after Peoples Democratic Party’s Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar; and shortly before Labour Party’s Presidential Candidate, Peter Obi; amongst other panelists.

Atiku had said if elected president come 2023, he will hand over federal universities to state governments and the private sector for efficient management.

Commenting immediately after Atiku, Shettima said, “Nigerians have the capability to see through the worn-out rhetoric and sophistry of pretentious politicians. Nigerians should follow the man wey know the road. From day one, we will hit the ground running. We’ll promptly address the issue of the economy, ecology, and security.

“And we have the antecedents. I built some of the best schools in Nigeria. Go to Borno and see wonders; you will never believe that it is a state in a state of war.

“So, we are going to replicate our achievements in Lagos, in Borno and some of the frontline states so that our nation will be a better place. The fundamental issue is pure leadership.”

Borno has been a hotbed of terrorist attacks since 2009.

Local governments attacked by insurgents in the state have been deserted though the state government has recently been making efforts to resettle thousands of internally displaced persons.

The 13-year-old jihadist insurgency has killed more than 40,000 people and displaced 2.2 million in the northeast region.

The violence has spilled into neighbouring Niger, Chad and Cameroon, prompting a regional military coalition to fight the insurgents.

2023: Youths Stage Solidarity Rally For Peter Obi In Imo

Some youths took to the streets of Owerri to show support for Peter Obi's presidency bid on August 20, 2022.
Some youths took to the streets of Owerri to show support for Peter Obi’s presidency bid on August 20, 2022.

 

Hundreds of youths in Imo state on Saturday staged a solidarity rally in support of the Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, ahead of the 2023 general elections.

The youths took to the streets of Owerri, carrying banners and chanting songs amid heavy traffic.

According to some youths who spoke to Channels Television, there is no better qualified candidate in 2023 than Obi.

Since leaving the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and clinching the presidential ticket of the Labour Party, support for Mr Obi has grown, especially on social media.

Police Arrest Five Suspects After Mob Attacks Convoy Of Osun First Lady

A file photo of Mrs Kafayat Oyetola
A file photo of Mrs Kafayat Oyetola

 

The police have arrested five suspects after the convoy of the wife of Osun State Governor, Kafayat Oyetola, was attacked on Friday evening.

According to a statement by police spokesperson, Yemisi Opalola, the incident occurred when a truck driver, Omolola Opeyemi, blocked the road.

Security operatives attached to Mrs Oyetola reportedly sustained varying degrees of injuries.

Channels Television gathered that the convoy of Mrs Oyetola had been passing through Owode-Ede market around 8pm.

An eyewitness said a truck suddenly blocked the road and as security operatives tried to intervene, some thugs started to stone the convoy.

They also attacked the convoy with dangerous weapons and a security operative started shooting into the air to disperse them, the eyewitness said.

An aide to Mrs Oyetola said no life was lost.

However, the aide did not disclose the number of security operatives that sustained injuries.

Oil Bunkering: Wike Orders Arrest Of Filling Station Owner

A file photo of Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike.

 

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has asked security agencies in the state to identify and arrest the owner of a filling station that was recently sealed in Port Harcourt for allegedly trading in illegally refined petroleum products.

Governor Wike gave the directive while speaking at the flag off ceremony for the construction of internal road network in Omagwa in the Ikwerre Local Government Area of the State.

Although the Governor did not mention the name of the owner of the feeling station that was sealed, a current Member of the House of Representatives, Chinyere Igwe has said the filling station, located in the Diobu Area of Port Harcourt, belongs to him.

READ ALSO: Atiku’s Delegation Meets Wike In Port Harcourt

He alleged that the action which was executed by those he described as police officers from the Rivers State Government House, was politically motivated because of his affinity with the camp of the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, in Rivers State.

A hotel and a bar belonging to two other pro-Atiku politicians have also been sealed.

On Saturday, Wike said the state has spent a lot of funds in fighting the activities of the economic saboteurs and will not relent at this point, no matter the social status or political leaning of anyone involved.

He vowed to deploy all his might against anyone who has benefitted from the state and would turn to work with the enemies of the state.

The Governor referred such people to understand the Russian politics of President Vladimir Putin and his friends, on how anyone who reneges on a deal is treated.

He furiously sounded a note of warning to his former allies who together with him planned the removal of a National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, but are now going to hold meetings with the said former National Chairman in Abuja.

Wike equally warned the current National Assembly candidates of the PDP in the state, not to take the votes of the people for granted, asserting that anything is possible before and after the elections.