NBA fires back Says Wike Attacked Due To ‘Vaulting Ambition’ To Be President

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Wike blows hot calls Nigerian Bar Association useless

fires back Says Attacked Due To ‘Vaulting Ambition’ To Be President

The Nigerian Bar Association has replied to Governor Nyesom Wike‘s assertion that Nigerian attorneys under the current NBA umbrella have failed to preserve the and support the judiciary.

According to NBA President Olumide Akpata. Wike is either neglecting the outstanding work of fellow legal practitioners in Nigeria or is simply being inconsiderate owing to his eagerness to be president of Nigeria.

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Wike, speaking at an event in Portharcourt on Monday to honour Justice Mary Odili, who recently resigned from the Supreme Court, accused the NBA of being only good at releasing “statements.”

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Governor wike, who is also a senior lawyer, said, “What is even more concerning on the part of the NBA President is his failure to admit that the NBA, including the inner and outer bar which he leads, has failed in its responsibility to protect the rule of law and defend the judiciary from punitive intimidation and erosion of its independence by the All Progressives Congress-led Federal Government,”

NBA response to Wike

However, in a statement released on Thursday, Akpata said the governor’s comments were “baseless claims against the NBA” and that Wike utilised the attack on the NBA to promote his presidential bid in 2023.

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He explained that Wike’s remarks were false because the NBA quickly came to Mary Peter-Odili JSC’s defence when her home was attacked by unscrupulous security officials, among other things.

“While we recognize that Governor Wike is currently on the political soapbox, and that, like a man with a new hammer, he would seize onto every opportunity to pitch his campaign, he cannot and should not be permitted to use the NBA as fodder of any kind for his vaulting ambition.”

NBA fires back compares Wike with a “Man with a new Hammer”

“Short of taking the law into our own hands and carrying ammunition without a licence to defend the judiciary, the NBA insists that it is doing its best in the circumstances, and in an environment widely acknowledged to be marked by recklessness and a disregard for the rule of law by governments at all levels,” the NBA says. “The NBA regards Governor Wike‘s invectives as thoughtless and uncharitable in this regard,” the statement said.

NBA LISTED SOME OF ITS ACHIVEMENTS

As a reply to Wike, Akpata enumerated the NBA’s legal escapades as follows:

“First, there was the crisis that rocked the Cross River State Judiciary when, contrary to established legal precedent, the Governor of the State refused to appoint the State’s most senior Judge, Justice Akon Ikpeme, as substantive Chief Judge on the grounds that she was not a Cross River State indigene.”

That was an attempt by the executive branch of government to extend its political territory to the judiciary, and the NBA’s active role in defending the judiciary and settling that nasty catastrophe in that State (and a few others where similar scenarios played out later) is well-documented.

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“Secondly, Nigerians will recall how the NBA quickly rallied to the defence of Mary Peter-Odili JSC (rtd) and the Nigerian judiciary in general when the former’s home was raided by rogue security officers. The NBA’s vehement objection to the unauthorized invasion included the hiring of a Special Investigator to figure out who was behind it.

NBA fires back compares Wike with a “Man with a new Hammer”

The fact that the Special Investigator did not find the CEO responsible after an exhaustive fact-finding process indicates that his appointment was not made to achieve a predetermined goal, and should not be viewed as the NBA being a “paper tiger.”

“The NBA’s defence of Honourable Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court, who was wrongfully excoriated by His Excellency Engr. Dave Umahi, Governor of Ebonyi State, after an unfavourable decision was issued against the Governor, is also vivid in our collective memories.”

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The NBA’s defence of the judiciary in that instance led to the Governor issuing an almost immediate apology.

“More broadly, the NBA has filed public interest lawsuits to challenge the Government’s and its agencies’ excesses; issued strongly worded statements and reprimands in which it named and shamed political leaders with despotic and undemocratic tendencies; initiated a process to enthrone the appointment of only the best from among us as Judges; and even joined in a ten-week long strike action (with significant economic consequences) in the last twenty months.”

That is the latest on NBA fires back Says Wike Attacked Due To ‘Vaulting Ambition’ To Be President.

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