Though I am nonchalant about the leadership and politics of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), my candid opinion is that Prof. Ernest Ojukwu SAN is the best of all the candidates to lead the Bar at this time. He is the only candidate that has articulated plausible, cogent and seemingly persuasive manifesto. He is the man that has the best ideas and vision for Nigerian lawyers.
The fact that he does not appear as the candidate of the Bar establishment is an added advantage in my view. We have tested “traditional Bar men” for too long and they have consistently failed us, saved for few exceptions. We should test the non politicians.
I see Prof. Ernest Ojukwu as the finest of all.
But like the typical Nigerian electoral contest, the best are rarely given the chance. We are used to giving the crooked ones the leadership pedestal. Our politics is not about ideas and manifestos, it is about ethnicity, religion and personal interest.
The NBA today is nearly useless to the average lawyer in Nigeria, especially the young lawyers. NBA has become a professional monstrosity that does not represent the interest of its members. We pay practicing fees and membership dues for nothing.
Successive Bar leaderships in recent years have not lived up to expectations. The politics of the Bar is reflective of the Nigerian political culture; money and godfatherism have jointly and severally fought and defeated credibility and charisma.
We, lawyers, have failed Nigeria. NBA has failed lawyers. Today, the voice of the Bar has been lost in Nigeria.
Lawyers must first heal themselves of the infamy that is afflicting the Bar before they can heal the nation. I am not endorsing Prof. Ojukwu. I am merely expressing my opinion on the suitability of his candidacy in contrast to his opponents.
I have nothing personal against the other contestants, but I do not think that they will be better than Prof. Ojukwu. The future Bar is for the man that understands what that future needs.
I have no interest in the politics of the Bar, certainly not now.
Legal Practitioner l Human Rights Activist I Good Governance Advocate.