Nigerian Bar Association President Yakubu Maikyau, SAN, has called on members to recognize their role in Nigeria’s development, adding that they are better equipped to restore, reform and reposition the country during these difficult times.
This was contained in his New Year’s message delivered on Sunday, January 1, to celebrate the beginning of 2023.
According to Maikyau, Nigeria is going through difficult times. She noted that the election period was another test for legal professionals to realize their obligations, adding that they owe Nigerians honesty in the electoral process.
The message read in part: “Having entered the new year, I feel compelled to remind us of our place as members of the legal profession and the critical role we play in building the nation. We must reawaken to our primary responsibilities to our nation, the people, and our customers. Our nation is going through difficult times, and no body is more equipped to get us back on the road to recovery, reform, and repositioning than the legal profession.
“We are privileged to have everything it takes to rebuild Nigeria and we must allow that awareness to permeate our minds and influence our actions as we do everything we can to make Nigeria great again.
“2023 is a momentous year in our country, with the general elections on February 25 and March 11, 2023, respectively. As lawyers, we must remember that we have very important roles to play in determining the outcome of this election; either as voters alongside other Nigerians, or as lawyers advising political parties and candidates, or handling cases that may arise from elections. Consequently, we owe Nigerians sincere and honest participation at all stages of the electoral process.
“We also have a duty to preserve the legal space for the next generation of lawyers. For this reason, we must avoid all forms of unprofessional and unethical practices that could cast a bad light on the legal profession and undermine our place in society. We also have an obligation to the younger members of the profession; the duty of deliberate and sincere mentorship, which is the only way the ideal legal profession will remain for generations to come.
“As we interact with other Nigerians at all levels, we must always keep in mind that our primary call is for justice, to ensure that justice is done in all circumstances, regardless of who is involved. Therefore, fairness, and not pay for service, must remain our primary motivation in everything we do; we are ministers in the Temple of Justice, and it is to justice that we owe our primary allegiance.
“In this new year, we must commit individually and collectively to the protection and preservation of the integrity and independence of the Judiciary and the Legal Profession. We must fervently promote the rule of law in our country, so that when this year ends, we can look back with pride and satisfaction, knowing that the privilege of the gift of 2023 was used with judgment and purpose.
“We remain committed to our promises to the Bar Association and to the people of Nigeria, one of which is to seek justice for our beloved Mobolanle Raheem and Gafaru Buraimoh (both of blessed memory), whose lives were cut short by foolishness and barbarism. . acts of persons who had a duty to protect them. As we continue to pray for God’s comfort for their families and loved ones, we must allow our humanity to find expression in our daily interactions and refuse to be callous and insensitive to the unfortunate bloodshed that seems to be our daily experience in different parts of the world. country.”