Osinbajo tasks lawyers on integrity, says they have lots to offer Nigeria

THE vice-president, Professor Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) on Friday said the legal profession has a lot to offer in the efforts geared towards salvaging the country from its trying times.

Osinbajo, who spoke on Friday at the official commissioning of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) House in Abuja, said lawyers have the capacity to make meaningful inputs in the realisation of good governance in the country and added, however, that integrity and accountability were needed for lawyers to make the desired impact in the lives of the people.

He tasked legal practitioners in the country to imbibe the virtue of integrity in their professional dealings, saying that integrity and accountability remain the hallmarks of the profession.

“I believe that our profession has a lot to offer our nation, especially in its most difficult times. The most important aspect of that is integrity; our profession must demonstrate that we are capable of teaching integrity in this land.

“We should be believed for what we say we are; we must bear in mind that everyone is looking at us and that we are the example, not just for our profession, but for the entire country,” Osinbajo said.

He commended the NBA leadership for its unity of purpose in ensuring that the Bar House was not abandoned by successive NBA administrations, urging the various tiers of government in the country to emulate the Bar by completing projects started by previous administrations.

“One of the important lessons we have seen in this edifice is the power of unity. From Mr. Olisa Agbakoba to the presidency of Augustine Alegeh, we see the completion of the building which by every account is possibly one of the most important edifices in this city of Abuja.”

“It is a building that demonstrates the unity of the legal profession; it demonstrates our capacity to start and to finish which is by itself a very rare thing in this part of the world. I think what we have done has set an incredibly good example not just for our profession but our nation as a whole”, the vice president said.

In his goodwill message, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara lauded the NBA for its foresight in putting up a befitting building for lawyers in the country, saying it had set a good example for the country’s leadership to follow.

The out-going NBA President expressed his satisfaction with the electoral process that produced Abubakar Mahmoud (SAN) as the NBA President-designate, describing him (Mahmoud) as an “experienced lawyer” with foresight to move the NBA forward.