Speak up on issues, Lawyers charged
By Adekola Afolabi
Legal practitioners in the country have been charged to speak up on critical national issues as a way of conscientising those in authority.
Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu who stated this said, doing so would serve as a guide to taking informed decisions and check on any form of abuse that may occur as a result of going ahead with inimical to the yearnings and aspirations of the people and nation thereby creating confusion in the county.
He challenged lawyers to take back their noble profession which confers on them as the defenders of human dignity and territorial integrity of the nation by being the real conscience of the nation.
Akeredolu spoke during the grand finale of the 2019 Annual Law Week of Owo Branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA). At the ceremony, governor Akeredolu and his wife, Betty were decorated as the Grand Patron and Patroness respectively of Owo branch of the association in recognition of their unrelenting commitment to the promotion of human dignity.
Governor Akeredolu who is also the Chairman of Southwest Governors’ Forum described as unsettling the current state of quietude to crucial national issues by the Nigerian Bar Association, adding that no one should should allow anyone to guess where they stand on matters which affect the health of the country.
While appreciating the Owo Branch of NBA for the honour, the governor attributed all his modest achievements at the bar and in piloting the affairs of Ondo State, which have now been considered worthy to justify the uncommon recognition as the combination of his training as a lawyer and rare support he had enjoyed over the years persons of sound minds largely within the bar and in his government.
The chairman of the occasion who doubles as the President of the association, Mr. Paul Usoro, SAN, said the governor has justified lawyers as a catalyst for good governance through his leadership skills to bring transformation to the association during his tenure as the President, which is also evident in his developmental strides in Ondo state.
Usoro who was represented by the immediate past Attorney-General and Commissioner of justice in Oyo state, Mr. Seun Abimbola, described Akeredolu as a good manager of people and resources, adding that Owo is one of the cosmopolitan branches of NBA in Nigeria.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Chairman of NBA, Owo branch, Mr. Olutope Ahmed identified Akeredolu as the catalytic agent that catapulted the branch from obscurity to limelight, while lauding his developmental transformation of the state.
The guest speaker, Chief Adeniyi Akintola, SAN, noted that lawyers as catalysts for good governance is to put government on its toes to provide good services to the people.
Akintola who described lawyers as backbone of a nation, emphasised the need for the professionals to be change agents for the development of Nigeria by using law as a social tool to achieve good things for the citizens as stipulated by the constitution.
He noted that lawyers and good governance are sacrosanct for a better Nigeria, and charged them to always draw the attention of governments to the needs of the society.
According to him, Governor Akeredolu possesses community value as a successful lawyer, reason he won so many professional elections, and was also elected a governor.
The Royal Father of the occasion and Olugbo of Ugbo kingdom, Oba Obateru Akinruntan solicited the support of all monarchs in the state to work for his second term ambition in office.
The ceremony also featured fundraising for the building of Akeredolu Bar Centre in Owo. Other awardees at the event are the State Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice, Mr. Adekola Olawoye, the state chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission, ODIEC, Prof. Yomi Dinakin, the House of Representatives member representing Owo/Ose federal constituency, Otunba Timehin Adelegbe, Chief of Staff to the governor, Mr. Gbenga Ale, Permanent Secretary Ministry of Education, Mr. Raphael Asaniyan, among others.