The President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Yakubu Chnonoko Maikyau, SAN, has declined to participate in the ongoing Call to Bar Ceremony. This
This is following the failure of the chairman of Body of Benchers, Wole Olanipekun to recuse himself from presiding over the ceremony.
Maikyau had earlier written to Olanipekun to recuse himself from the ceremony and asked that retired Justice Mary Peter Peter Odili preside over the ceremony instead.
Recall that the former President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Akpata Olumide also wrote to Olanipekun asking him step aside as the BOB Chairman due to alleged professional misconduct.
In the letter titled STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE NIGERIAN BAR ASSOCIATION (NBA), YAKUBU CHONOKO MAIKYAU, OON, SAN, ON THE INSISTENCE BY THE CHAIRMAN, BODY OF BENCHERS (BOB), CHIEF WOLE OLANIPEKUN, OFR, CFR, SAN, TO PRESIDE OVER THE CALL TO BAR CEREMONY SCHEDULED FOR 6 AND 7 DECEMBER 2022, Maikyau said the NBA under his leadership cannot be part of the ceremony superintended by Olanipekun for all the reasons stated in his earlier letter under reference.
“In the circumstances therefore, having regard to my firm persuasion that the matters raised in my letter should have led the BoB to ask the Chairman to recuse himself in the interest of safeguarding the integrity of the Legal Profession, I am in good conscience unable to attend and participate in the Call to Bar Ceremony.
“The NBA under my leadership cannot be part of the ceremony superintended by the current Chairman of the BoB for all the reasons stated in my letter under reference.
“To do so will be to endorse, celebrate or condone a practice that I consider unwholesome and unprofessional, by virtue of the Rules of Professional Conduct for Legal Practitioners 2007.
“The NBA under my leadership remains committed to the protection of the integrity of the Bench and the Bar and will not shirk that responsibility.
“I assure all members of the NBA that the sole motivation for my letter to the BoB is my conviction on the need to salvage the image, reputation, and integrity of the legal profession in Nigeria, which has been negatively impacted by the email by Adekunbi Ogunde, a Partner in the Law Firm of the Chairman of the BoB.”