The Nigerian Bar Association is currently holding its Annual General Conference.
According to NBA President, Paul Usoro, the 60th edition of the conference represents a novel platform for knowledge exchange on the continent.
It hopes to bring together world leaders, political icons, judges, leading lawyers, thought leaders, policy makers, business icons, and civil society.
The participants will not just discuss but produce an implementation plan to foster the adoption of policies, standards and practices leading to socio-political stability, economic growth, sustainable and infrastructural development for accelerated regional and economic integration.
The conference is being held at the Eko Hotel and Suites in Victoria Island, Lagos State.
The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, has challenged the Nigeria Bar Association to work towards reforming the Nigerian judicial processes to ensure the speedy dispensation of justice in the country.
Professor Osinbajo posed the challenge on Wednesday when he virtually declared open the Annual National Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association in Lagos, where he represented President Muhammadu Buhari.
The vice president wants to see judicial reforms that will fast track all court cases so that the longest will be a maximum of 15 months.
Besides speedy dispensation of court case, Osinbajo noted that multiple and conflicting court orders are making a mockery of the judicial process, while highlighting the need for reforms in that area.
“Reform is urgent because the fabric of our society is stitched together by our system of justice and law enforcement.
“We cannot afford to have the stitches come undone. The first issue I would like to commend to your consideration is the terribly slow pace of trials in our courts.
“My question then is that why can’t we have timeliness on all cases? Why can’t we put in place the rules that will state that a criminal trial all the way to the Supreme Court must not exceed 12 months in duration?
“Why can’t we do the same for civil cases even if we say it that civil cases must not go beyond 15 months – between 12 and 15 months? I think that for me will be stepping forward.
“The question of speed raises a related concern in the context of a competitive global economy, a speed of our legal institutions and processes must match up with the global pace of transactions,” he said.
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr Chinonye Obiagwu, believes it is unnecessary for the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to apologise to Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, after he was disinvited as a speaker in one of the panel sessions at the lawyers’ conference.
Obiagwu, who is also a member of the NBA National Executive Council (NEC), stated this.
In addition to this, he recommended that the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice and some other government officials should be barred from attending the event.
“I must say that the apology of the present NBA is completely unnecessary because NEC has taken a decision; making an apology does not arise at all,” the senior lawyer said.
He added, “I will have gone further to disinvite people like the Attorney General of the Federation because we have on record more than 50 orders of the court that have been disobeyed by this government and how will you get the Attorney General of that nation to come to NBA conference; the Attorney-General that says national security takes precedence over the rule of law and human rights.”
According to Obiagwu, NBA is a pressure group and the motto of the association is to promote the rule of law.
He explained that the NEC did not just disinvite Governor El-Rufai because of the killings in Southern Kaduna, but the decision was taken also because of his alleged consistent disobedience to court orders.
The legal practitioner insisted that it was the right step to take, stressing that NBA should not allow in its fold, any government official that consistently disobeys court orders.
On the lingering crisis that has claimed many lives in Southern Kaduna, he stressed that the basis for disinviting the governor was ‘very substantial’.
He stated that the situation could be considered as genocide, wondering why the government, in its second term, and “has done little or nothing to curtail the killings”.
Obiagwu said, “We don’t have records of people who have been properly investigated or prosecuted for huge, massive, and systematic massacre going on in Southern Kaduna.”
“It is very appalling that a village will be razed down in a state where a Chief Executive is the Chief Executive Officer and we don’t see the concerted effort, a commitment to bringing to justice those responsible for those massacres.
“So, how will NBA, as a pressure group, justify bringing a Chief Executive that has taken no stand?” he questioned.
The deposed Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi, has faulted the disinvitation of Governor Nasir El-Rufai as a speaker in one of the panel sessions at the 2020 conference of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA).
Speaking during a visit to the Kaduna State governor at his office in the Government House on Sunday, Sanusi criticised the NBA for taking such a decision by relying on mere hearsay or petition from a few lawyers.
He believes it is wrong to withdraw the invitation the association earlier extended to the governor without given him a fair hearing to defend himself.
The former emir, however, advised that the matter should be handled properly by the leadership of the NBA to prevent it from generating ethnic or religious concerns.
According to him, the association has lost an opportunity to interrogate the governor and collectively rub minds to identify areas that need to be addressed for the purpose of governance.
Sanusi also prayed for peace to return to the troubled Southern Kaduna and other parts of the country where there were security challenges.
He also commended his host for the way he has managed the affairs of Kaduna, especially the effort to resolve the security challenges in Southern Kaduna and other parts of the state.
On his part, Governor El-Rufai described the former emir as a worthy partner and friend to Kaduna State.
He noted that as the Vice Chairman of Kaduna State Investment Promotion Agency, the former traditional ruler would help in turning around the economy of the state.
Following his arrival in Kaduna, Sanusi was received by a crowd of supporters who joined in his motorcade to the Government House.
His visit to Governor El-Rufai, who is his long-time friend for over 40 years, comes more than five months after he was deposed by Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State.
The Kaduna state branch of Muslim Lawyers Association of Nigeria (MULAN) has announced its withdrawal from the forthcoming annual general conference of the Nigerian Bar Association over the dis-invitation of the State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, as one of the Speakers at the conference.
At a press conference in Kaduna on Saturday, the group through its Chairman, Abbas Masanawa, noted that the decision of the NBA National Executive Committee to rescind an invite based on unsubstantiated allegations and without fair hearing from the Governor was deemed as parochial, sentimental and tainted with favoritism and ethnoreligious considerations.
The Muslim lawyers also wondered why the NBA chose to keep silent in the face of the killings going on in the northeast, Katsina, Zamfara, Niger and Birnin Gwari, in Kaduna state but chose to give surreptitious ethnic cover to the southern Kaduna attacks, as if lives matter more in some parts of the country over others.
Speaking further, the group wondered why the NBA invited Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state to speak at the conference in spite of his past utterances where he described Rivers as a Christian state but decided to dis-invite El-Rufai.
According to them, the NBA conference would have afforded lawyers the platform to interrogate Governor El-Rufai on some of the allegations leveled against him by some members of the association, rather than shutting him out after inviting him to the event earlier.
The group insisted that based on the NBA NEC decision, it is left with no option than to instruct its members across Kaduna state to withdraw their participation in the Association’s forthcoming conference.
Nigerian actress, Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde’s son, Captain E has been nominated for the 25 Under 25 music category award. The 22-year-old would be battling for the award with other rising stars like Omah Lay and Oxlade.
The winner will be declared on the 29th August. Captain E recently released his third single titled ‘More of You’ after he released ‘You & I’ in May and ‘Craze’ in June. At 19, Captain E worked with the likes of Falz, Seyi Shay and Mr Eazi. In 2014, he won the Best Producer section at the International Music Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, US.
The 25 Under 25 Entrepreneurs Awards is an annual award ceremony by SME 100 Africa aimed at recognising, acknowledging, honouring and supporting some of Nigeria’s most innovative entrepreneurs under the age of 25.
These are innovators, influencers, trendsetters, inventors, entrepreneurs, etc who are doing phenomenal things and contributing to socio-economic development in Nigeria.
The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has reacted to the controversy triggered by the decision to disinvite Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, as a speaker in one of the panel sessions at the forthcoming conference of its members.
NBA President, Paul Usoro, who is a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), explained the rationale behind the decision of the National Executive Council of the association in a statement on Friday.
He stressed that the disinvitation of the governor from the event had no ethnic or religious coloration or connotation as being claimed.
Usoro revealed that some of those who spoke against the governor’s attendance share the same faith with him while others came from the northern part of the country.
According to him, NBA NEC is not passing any judgment on Governor El-Rufai by its decision and is not in a position to pass such judgments without having all the facts and hearing from all the sides.
The NBA chairman state that the NEC did not discuss the substance of the issues that have been raised against the governor by the different groups and persons who clamored for his being disinvited, although there was “very considerable clamour” in that regard.
He insisted that the claims that the NEC decision was based on religion and ethnicity were not correct, stressing that they were far from the truth.
Usoro, who stated that neither the NBA nor its NEC belonged to any religious or ethnic group, urged the members of the association to remain united.
This year’s NBA Annual General Conference, which is the 60th, has been scheduled to take place between August 26 to 29.
Read the full statement below:
NBAAGC 2020 – NBA’S NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE’S (“NEC”) DECISION TO DIS-INVITE HIS EXCELLENCY MALLAM NASIR EL-RUFAI AS A SPEAKER IN A PANEL SESSION
1 At its meeting that was held yesterday, 20 August 2020, NEC took the decision to dis-invite HE Mallam Nasir El-Rufai as a Speaker in one of the Panel Sessions that is planned for the NBA 2020 AGC holding from 26-29 August 2020. This morning, I have had telephone discussions with the Director-General of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, Mr Asishana Okauru, on the issue and have tendered through him, to HE Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, my sincere apologies and regrets for any unintended embarrassment that he may have been caused by the NBA NEC’s decision.
2 I followed up our telephone discussions with the attached letter which explains the circumstances of the decision by NEC. The letter has been sent to Mr. Okauru, both in hard and soft copies. It is apropos that I reproduce in this Release, paragraphs 5, 6 and 7 of the letter for ease of reference by our members:
“5. In concluding, I must clarify two critical issues. First, NEC’s decision yesterday had no ethnic or religious coloration or connotation howsoever and whatsoever. In discussing the issue at NEC, nobody talked about religion or ethnicity. As I recall, there were no more than 3 (three) advocates for retaining the invitation of the NBA to HE Nasir El-Rufai(not including me) and two of these three gentlemen are from the South of Nigeria and one is a reverend gentleman. Conversely, some of those who spoke against his attendance share the same faith with Mallam Nasir El-Rufai and some others come from the Northern part of Nigeria.
“6. The second point that I must clarify is that, NBA NEC, by its decision was not passing any judgment on Mallam Nasir El-Rufai. NBA NEC is not in a position to pass such judgments without having all the facts and hearing from all the sides and it did not set out to pass any such judgment. NEC merely made a judgment that it was not in the best interest of the Association to be engulfed in the controversy that trailed the invitation of Mallam El-Rufai for the Conference and that it was best if the safety-valve of dis-inviting the Governor was applied. Indeed, NEC did not howsoever or at all discuss the substance of the issues that have been raised against the Governor by the different groups and persons who clamored for his being dis-invited – and there was very considerable clamor in that regard. I perhaps need to mention that, prior to the NEC meeting I had personally taken urgent and strident steps, working with the TCCP, to douse the clamor, but we had no success.
“7. I truly would appreciate your bringing this letter to the attention not just of HE Nasir El-Rufai but also to all the other members of the esteemed Nigerian Governors’ Forum and in particular, the Chairman of the Forum, HE (Dr) Kayode Fayemi. Please, assure Their Excellencies that the Nigerian Bar Association holds all our Governors, including HE Nasir El-Rufai, in the highest esteem and would do nothing intentionally to embarrass them collectively or individually. Once again, I offer my sincere and deepest apologies and regrets for the unintended embarrassment that may have been caused to HE Nasir El-Rufai by the afore-referenced decision of the NBA NEC and would appreciate your passing on my regrets and apologies to him personally.”
3 I draw attention to those paragraphs of my letter in particular in order to douse the ethnic and religious passions that seem to have been inflamed amongst our members by the NEC decision. I have received several messages from our members that have attributed ethnic and religious considerations to the decision. That is not correct and is very far from the truth. Neither the NBA nor NEC belong to any religious or ethnic group. We are lawyers and professionals dedicated to the ideals and the promotion and preservation of the Rule of Law and we belong to one indivisible family of the NBA.
4 Did NEC infringe the audi alteram partem principle – a cardinal principle of the Rule of the Law – by dis-inviting HE Mallam Nasir El-Rufai? No, it did not. As I point out in my letter, neither the NBA nor NEC set out to sit in judgment against Mallam El-Rufai and even from that prism, the principle of fair hearing does not apply. None of the persons or parties who are opposed to the invitation of Mallam El- Rufai to the AGC has been offered the NBA or AGC platform to advocate or propagate their viewpoints and positions and so, the principle of not hearing the other side does not arise.
5 Indeed, as at date, neither the NBA as a body nor NEC has interrogated the issues raised by persons who are opposed to HE El-Rufai’s invitation to the AGC and, therefore, the issues of fair hearing do not also arise. NBA is not even equipped to play that role of an arbiter or court in respect of the issues raised by persons opposed to HE El-Rufai’s invitation and has never pretended to be so equipped and/or mandated.
6 I am hoping that this Release would assist in clarifying issues for our members and placing the NEC decision in its correct perspective. I implore all our members to please not view this issue howsoever from an ethnic or religious perspective. Those were not the issues considered by NEC yesterday. We are one united Nigerian Bar Association with no religious or ethnic bias or predisposition and shall ever so remain.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State says he is not deterred by the decision of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to remove him as one of its speakers for the body’s 2020 Conference.
The NBA had, following a petition against the governor by some lawyers – due to security issues in Kaduna – removed El-Rufai as a speaker in the event scheduled to hold virtually from August 24-26, 2020.
But in a statement on behalf of the governor, Special Adviser to the former Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister, Muyiwa Adekeye said his principal will continue to speak on matters of national importance.
“When lawyer friends requested Malam Nasir El-Rufai to accept the invitation of the NBA to participate in a panel discussion on national identity, he accepted as part of his commitment to having a national conversation and the evolution of a national consensus,” Muyiwa said.
“NBA platform or not, these worthy conversations must continue. He will continue to make his voice heard on the things our country needs to do for its progress.”
‘Not Agitated’ While the NBA has the right to determine who speaks at its event, El-Rufai says he did not seek the lawyers’ platform and do not see the development as enough reason to be agitated.
El-Rufai believes with happenings in the lead up to the NBA’s decision, there is a need to clear the air just as he accused the lawyers’ body of following what he described as a “one-sided narrative.”
The NBA leadership, as far as the Kaduna leader is concerned, have by removing him as a speaker in the conference, embraced injustice, unfairness and an indifference to the rule of law.
“For an association, whose bread and butter is about justice to make a ruling based on the stridency of people who lampoon judicial processes against certain individuals without hearing the other side is odd,” the statement explained.
“It bears noting that in its response to pressure, the NBA leadership has signalled an unfortunate embrace of injustice, unfairness, absence of fair hearing and total disregard for the rule of law.”
Although he claims there are several defamatory statements in the petition that led to his withdrawal from the conference, the statement noted that it is a matter that will be treated differently.
‘Constituency For Peace’ While reeling out his principal’s efforts in peace-building and his development strides, El-Rufai’s aide said Kaduna is not the only state experiencing security challenges in the country and assured that in spite of the challenges, the Kaduna governor will not be deterred in his quest to address the situation.
“His investments in building a constituency for peace, anchored on the rule of law, respect for the citizenship rights of everyone and an embrace of the obligations of a common humanity will continue,” he added.
“Those who have chosen to pretend that it is only Kaduna State that is experiencing the security challenges in North-West, or that it is only one part of the state that is affected can enjoy the illusion.
“Malam El-Rufai remains focused on the tough and hard work of stopping the bleeding and the needless breaking of bones.”
The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has withdrawn its invitation to Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai as one of its speakers for the 2020 Annual General Conference.
The NBA disclosed this in a tweet on its official handle on Thursday and said the decision has been communicated to the Governor.
“The National Executive Committee of the Nigerian Bar Association at its ongoing meeting resolves that the invitation to the Kaduna State Governor, H.E. Nasir El-Rufai by the 2020 Annual General Conference Planning committee be withdrawn and [the] decision communicated to the Governor,” the NBA said.
Prior to El-Rufai’s withdrawal, a petition had been filed to stop the Kaduna leader from attending the Conference.
“The senseless killings in southern Kaduna must stop. The political correctness of Governor El-Rufai on national TV is diversionary,” the petition read.
“It is a reversal to have him speak to lawyers on security when Governor (Babagana) Zulum of Borno a better person can do so.
“We may not be able to do anything to stop the killings, but we can stop the governor from speaking at the NBA-AGC to show our disapproval of the manner he has handled the situation!!”
The petition which was started by a lawyer, Usani Odum has generated about 3,150 signatures on Change.Org as of 4 pm on Thursday, August 20th, 2020.
Southern Kaduna Crisis Equally, a human rights lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN) had called for the removal of the Governor from the list of speakers for the event.
In a letter addressed to the Chairman, Technical Committee, Conference Planning Committee (NBA), Konyinsola Ajayi (SAN), Falana based his decision on the crisis in Southern Kaduna.
According to him, the committee should not allow someone who allegedly has a penchant for promoting impunity to mount its platform.
This year’s NBA conference which takes place from August 24-26, 2020, will have several dignitaries including Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), in attendance.
The event will also see the former Governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi; Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State and a former Education Minister, Obiageli Ezekwesili speaking.
According to the NBA, the theme of this year’s conference is: ‘Am I a Nigerian – A Debate on National Identity, the Indigeneship-Citizenship Conundrum.”
A Nigerian, Adefolami Agunbiade has made the Rockefeller Foundation Top 10 Finalists for the Food System Vision Prize.
Agunbiade and nine others were picked from a pool of over 1, 300 applicants from 110 nations with plans of developing a plan of the generative and nourishing food system that they aspire to create by 2050.
“The Top 10 Finalists, whose Visions focus on Canada, China, India, Kenya, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Peru, and the U.S., were selected based on their potential to inspire real, positive and bold transformation of a specific food system that is actionable, concrete and believed to be attainable by 2050,” the Rockefeller Foundation explained in a post on its website.
“These Visions aim to tackle challenges tied to six themes (environment, diets, economics, culture, technology, and policy), while showing the systemic inter-dependencies between these themes.”
The Nigerian who is the Project Lead at Food Innovation Nervecenter, identified six major food challenges facing the country with focus on the South Western states of Lagos, Ekiti, Ogun, Ondo, Oyo and Osun.
“This vision from Lagos, Nigeria identifies six key food challenges for the region, from food waste to aging farmers, and outlines a multi-faceted plan to build a more regenerative and nourishing food system,” the organization said.
The other finalists for the Rockefeller Foundation Food System Vision Prize have their ‘Visions Focus’ on Canada, China, India, Kenya, the Netherlands, Peru, and the U.S.
In September, the shortlisted persons will go on a three-month virtual ‘Accelerator,’ a period where they are billed to get support to refine their visions and find ways for implementation.
The ‘Accelerator’ will also focus on stakeholder engagement, communications, action planning and storytelling and will provide mentorship opportunities for the finalists.
Following its launch about a year ago, the Rockefeller Foundation Food System Vision Prize seeks to develop actionable solutions for the global food systems with the ‘Top Visionary’ going home with a prize of $200,000 USD.
The ‘Top Visionaries’ will be announced in December 2020, the Rockefeller Foundation explained.
A Nigerian preacher has sent a warning to the Federal Government of Nigeria to stop the airing of Big Brother Naija reality show on television or failure to do so he is going to unleash his spiritual powers and shut it down himself.
The pastor who is yet to be unidentified exclaimed that the broadcast of BBNaija is having a negative influence on children and young adults because it is corrupting their upbringing of them morally.
Taking to social media to vent his anger on the leadership of the country in a video making round online, he asked;
“President Buhari, I want to ask you, have you people sold this country to BBNaija? You people recommended online lessons for our children, we bought android phones for them to use and do online lessons and they are now using the smartphones we bought for them to watch this rubbish..”
All Big Brother Naija housemates are up for possible evictions this week except Lucy and Prince.
Lucy who won the Head of House chose Prince as her Deputy Head of House which gives both of them immunity for the week.
To vote for your favourite Housemate, Text “Vote + Housemate’s name” to 32052.
Recall with Noble Reporters Media that Big Brother has introduced a new twist to the show as all housemates of the on going Big Brother Naija reality show will be put up for possible eviction as the show enters its second week.
According to the show’s host Ebuka Obi Uchendu, all housemates will be put up for eviction except the housemate who wins the Head of House challenge tomorrow July 27. The Deputy Head of House will also not be put up for eviction.
Ebuka made this revelation on the live show today, Sunday 26.
Ebuka went further to reveal that the housemate with the lowest vote will be evicted, then other housemates will kick out one housemate out of the bottom four.
A Nigeria Prophet has prophesied that Olamilekan “Laycon” Agbeleshe, will emerge winner of the 2020 Season 5 edition of the program and would be rewarded with the 85million Naira star prize.
Pastor Prince Dickson, the General Overseer of SRI Pastor Wealthy Nations Ministry Abuja, had on Wednesday 22nd July 2020 Prophesied that Laycon will become the winner of the Season 5 edition of Big Brother Naija.
He made the prophecy known via his social media handle and since then, there have been various reactions across the social media space.
Though the prophecy may have come to so many as a hurdle, it has also established the anticipation about Laycon’s prospective victory in the BB naija house.
Laycon is a 26-year-old rapper, whose fame has absolutely remained on the rise. His emotional story about his family, background and academic struggles has made him a standout in the house, thereby pulling more fans and interest into his personality.