- A co-convener of the NNBA, Abdulbasit Suleiman, says not less than 5,000 lawyers seek to join the new association
- The NNBA is a splinter group of the NBA that emerged after the crisis that rocked the association
- Suleiman claims that intending members are from the north and some southern states
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Abdulbasit Suleiman, one of the conveners of the New Nigeria Bar Association (NNBA), has said more than 5,000 lawyers have indicated interest to join the new proposed body of lawyers.
Suleiman who noted that he could not confirm the exact number of lawyers who have indicated interest, however, put the figure at over 5,000, The Nation reports.
According to the co-convener, he received calls from Lagos, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Ekiti and directed that the lawyers compile a list of prospective members in their branches across the country.
“I can’t give the exact figure. Some minutes ago, I received a call from Lagos, from some lawyers who said they were interested. So, I directed the lawyer to compile the list over there. So, we are still counting, and I can’t give you a particular figure now,” he said.
He said that the intending members are from the north, seven southern states, including four other southwest states, adding that no SAN from the south is yet to indicate interest.
Suleiman went on to note that those who have already subscribed to NNBA membership include Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) from the north.
It was reported that the new splinter group emerged last week following the controversy that trailed the withdrawal of Governor Nasir El-Rufai as a speaker from NBA's Annual General Conference (AGC) among other issues.
Suleiman claimed that the newly-formed association has the backing of several SANs and other senior lawyers.
Recall that NNBA wrote to the Attorney-General of the Federation and minister of justice, Abubakar Malami, over the crisis rocking the NBA. The NNBA informed the AGF of its decision to form the new body in a letter.
In the letter, dated Friday, August 28, and signed by its conveners, Nuhu Ibrahim and Abdulbasit, the new faction said the national executive council of the NBA “failed to take into consideration our national interests.
“We are pleased to inform you of the formation of a new association of lawyers as above captioned.”
The NNBA said the processes required to set up the association are in place, adding that the AGF will be updated with developments.
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that Olumide Akpata, the newly-elected president of the NBA had been sworn-in to lead the national legal body.
Akpata floored two rivals who are Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) in the election which was held in July 2020 to become the first lawyer to emerge president of the NBA before attaining the rank.
The swearing-in ceremony held in Abuja on Friday, August 28, also witnessed the dissolution of the Paul Usoro-led National Executive Committee (NEC).
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