(by udems)

▪️A lawyer wrote this on 14 February 2020 on a platform I belong:
“We rubbish our own regional group, Egbe Amofin… but go to EBF to prostrate and if I may ask, what is the essence of attending EBF and Arewa Lawyers Forum? I think those who want aspire to lead us must be consistent and clearheaded on issues.”

▪️And this was my reply on the same day: With due respect, I humbly and completely disagree with this declaration. ▪️I am not aware that any one of the persons who have so far expressed their intentions to run for NBA 2020 Presidential election has done anything, by conduct or otherwise, to try to “rubbish” or otherwise disrespect the highly revered Egbe Amofin Yoruba.

▪️The truth, to the best of my knowledge, is that each of the presidential aspirants, holds Egbe Amofin Yoruba as high as he or she holds the EBF (Eastern Bar Forum), the Arewa Lawyers Forum, the Midwest Bar Forum or any other regional bar groups.

▪️However, I am aware that Dr Babatunde Ajibade, SAN had, in genuine protest, pulled out of the processes and procedures leading to the purported “adoption” of another aspirant by Egbe Amofin, Dr Ajibade’s reasons being, among others, that there was a transparent absence of transparency and impartiality on the part of the organisers and sponsors of the purported adoption.

▪️In my humble opinion, one’s rejection of a process on grounds of perceived lack of transparency, cannot be equated with “rubbishing” the organisers of the process nor is that tantamount to disrespect for the organisation itself, unless, by way of an analogy, we could agree (although I do not agree) that a lawyer who files a Notice of Preliminary Objection in court to challenge the court’s jurisdiction or who appeals against a court’s decision, is thereby “rubbishing” the institution of the judiciary.

▪️Egbe Amofin is a very respected regional bar group in Nigeria. ▪️But it’s not infallible nor all-knowing. ▪️Besides, at a certain time in history, perhaps to achieve certain predetermined ends, a human organisation could practically be hijacked by human agents who may deploy the organization or a section of it towards predetermined self-seeking ends that may in turn not go down well with all or with some or with the majority of its members. ▪️Many lawyers have argued that such was the case with the adoption purportedly orchestrated by the respected Egbe Amofin Yoruba in December 2019.

▪️Since such was the case, an aspirant who decided or decides to distance himself from such a skewed process cannot be reasonably or validly described as disrespectful to the organization or to its members.
Sylvester Udemezue