(A huge challenge for the TCCP for NBA-AGC-2020)

(By Sylvester Udemezue)

The final account of the TCCP for the 2019 Annual General Conference (AGC)
of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) was recently released, indicating a huge amount of money was remitted (back) into NBA’s administrative coffers after the Conference; which clearly shows that NBA made a huge profit from the Conference, instead of recording deficits as had been the case in the most recent past.

Enconiums have been pouring out to the NBA National leadership and the TCCP for NBA-AGC-2019 Sind et he release of the account on 02/02/2020. But one reaction particularly caught my fancy and that is the remark by respected learned colleague, @⁨Charles Ajiboye,FICMC, who, out of fascination, having read through TCCP’s final report/account, exclaimed thus:
“This is fantastic. ???to the Executives and members of the TCCP. This [one] is good…” Now, I happily join in accepting the overwhelming expression of appreciation by a greater majority of Nigeria’s lawyers; yes, I join (I have to) because I was a TCCPIte (a member of the TCCP) for the NBA-AGC 2019. ✔To start with, below was my suggestion to MR Paul Usoro, SAN, in August 2018, shortly after he had been declared winner of the NBA 2018 presidential elections: ”Leaders ought also to realize that diversity of thinking is critical to effective collaboration and management; thus, they must pay close attention to team composition and team processes in order to fish out all capable hands to work with for success.” (see “NBA 2018 Elections: A Word of Congratulation, Caution to Winners and All – by Sylvester Udemezue,”

✔As a truly dynamic leader that he’s, Paul Usoro,SAN, had in January 2019 assembled a formidable team of seasoned legal giants and pragmatic legal performers to be in charge of planning and delivery of the NBA-AGC 2019.

✔The first note of appreciation ought therefore to go to the man on whose table the buck stops, the head that wears the crown. Thank you, PUSAN for being the brain behind TCCP-brains that hatched and birthed the best NBA-AGC ever. Paul Usoro’s insistence on observance of the best corporate governance and prudent organizational practices resulted in the huge profit now recorded by the NBA-AGC 2019. PUSAN is a hard-headed leader of zestful and hard-nosed leaders. He and his NBA executive team were always on hand to provide required advice, offer necessary assistance, and to ensure that the PUSAN leadership ideals and manifesto were religiously observed with a view to ensuring that AGC-delivery went according to TCCPlans.

✔Accordingly, just as all blame and opprobrium would have been PUSAN’s to accept if the NBA-AGC 2019 had flopped or failed to meet the high expectations of Nigerian lawyers, now that the NBA-AGC 2019 has fortunately ended up in surpassing all reasonable expectations, the glory and praise belong to the man at the helm, first, for having provided the purposeful leadeship that resulted in perfect planning and delivery of an excellent NBA-AGC, and second, for having assembled the bright brains that were responsible for the planning and successful implementation of the unprecedentedly satisfying NBA-AGC 2019.
✔Having said this , I must thank you, MR GBENGA OYEBODE MFR, (Chairman, TCCP for NBA-AGC 2019) for providing a purposeful TCCP-leadership.

✔Thank you immensely, MR OLUMIDE APATA (Co-Chairman, TCCP for NBA-AGC 2019) for being an especially wonderful and dynamic TCCP-Co-leader.

✔Thank you, Able Chairmen of the various TCCP subcommittees — starting with our highly pragmatic Nfon Usoro (Content subcommittee), overtly indefatigable Kunle Edun (Media & Publicity subcommittee) to the mega-innovative Chuka-Ikwuazom (LOC subcommittee), supremely foresighted Mrs. Chinyere Okorocha, alongside her Co-chair, Val Obi, SAN (Finance subcommittee) and the distinguished Learned Silk, SenI Adio (Technical subcommittee), etc.

✔Thank you, all NBA-AGC-2019 TCCPites (including udems) for the unprecedentedly pragmatic and wonderful planning that resulted in what is now adjudged by an overwhelming majority of Nigerian lawyers as the most orderly, especially enriching, best-organized and successfully delivered NBA-AGC ever. Finally, I thank and congratulate all Nigerian lawyers, because without their support for, and cooperation with, the TCCP and the NBA National leadership, nothing could have been achieved in 2019. And not forgetting those who never believed in both PUSAN and the TCCP, and who had criticized the hell out of both, for they (the critics and unbelievers) had kept us on our toes towards the huge success and unprecedented excellence that the NBA-AGC-2019 later turned out to become. ✔Cherie White was right: “When others tell you, ‘you can’t’, they actually fear that you can and are even more afraid that you will.”

✔Meanwhile, I think that, among the many factors that were responsible for the huge successes recorded by the NBA-AGC-2019 were TCCP’s blend of pragmatism with idealism, the humility exhibited by TCCP leadership team, the team-spirit exhibited by the entire TCCP membership and the ease with which both the leadership and the followership admitted noticed mistakes, whether on the part of TCCP-leadership or on the part of the TCCP-followership.

✔Richard M. Nixon once said, *”Idealism without pragmatism is impotent. Pragmatism without idealism is meaningless. The key to effective leadership is pragmatic idealism.” It was the pragmatism of the TCCP-leadership that had helped the leaders to welcome TCCP members each time members told the leadership the truth that they needed to hear, rather than what they wanted to hear. Besides, pragmatic and dynamic leaders try to carry everyone along—- the idealists and the realists — because it is only a blend of both that drives innovation. Furthermore, pragmatic leaders lead from the front while their acolytes follow after them, from behind, to emulate their shining examples. What is more? Pragmatic leaders are unsentimental, hard-hearted , and usually deal with issues sensibly, realistically, not based solely on theoretical considerations. It has been said that idealism detached from action is just a dream, while idealism allied or aligned with pragmatism, with rolling up your sleeves and making the world bend a bit, is exciting, real and strong. With only pockets of (partly deliberate, premeditated and partly groundless) criticisms, an overwhelming majority of Nigerian Lawyers had proudly attested to the fantastic manner of organization, and excellent execution and delivery of the #NBA-AGC-2019. Majority of participating delegates had attributed the noticed wonderful strategies to NBA National leadership (led by Paul Usoro) and to the TCCP for NBA-AGC-2019. It then appeared from the look of things, after the NBA-AGC 2019, that majority of the delegates went home full of applause and adulation while non delegates watched and observed with regrets (for their own failure or neglect to register and attend) and nostalgia for the success story they could, but did not, have the opportunity of being part of.

✔It is now hoped that more and more lawyers would be Part of the NBA-AGC 2020, so that the 15,000-delegate-attendance projections for the 2020 Conference would be oversubscribed.

✔We can only go higher and and forward, not backward. I accordingly urge the TCCP for the upcoming NBA-AGC-2020 to see clearly the huge task ahead of it, that of outshining, dwarfing and overshadowing all the gaines recorded by the NBA-AGC-2019. A huge responsibility indeed . But with focus, determination and commitment, it is hoped that NBA-AGC-2019 with all the goodies it offered, would turn out a mere child’s play by the time the execution and delivery of the NBA-AGC-2020 are over.
We keep moving forward, I repeat, opening new doors, and performing better and going higher. This is because, as Maximillian Degenerez once said, “when you have had a taste of excellence [in the past], you cannot go back to mediocrity.”

Even though you sure would be questioned and criticized for what you’re doing, you must RemainFocused to surpass all your targets.
Long live NBA!
Long live Nigeria!
Sylvester Udemezue

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