Babalakin links political injustices to lack of sound professional background
•Calls for rescue of legal profession
Dr Wale Babalakin, Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) has blamed the injustices suffered by Nigerians in the hands of politicians who govern the nation to lack of integrity created by lack of professional background.
Babalakin the immediate past Pro-Chancellor of Lagos State University said it was impossible for any politician who has no means of livelihood other than politicking to serve justice to Nigerians through governance.
He, therefore, urged authorities in the legal profession to ensure that the profession is robustly developed and encourage members of the silk to go into politics after establishing themselves in their trade
Babalakin charged them to “Go in to change the landscape but when you are going in make sure you have a second address because if you are unable to walk out of any position, then you cannot actually do justice with that position.
“If you are unable to say bye-bye irrespective of status, then you cannot do justice to that position when you are there.”
He spoke on Wednesday in Abuja at book presentation “Two decades of Forensic Advocacy at the Inner Bar: A Festschrift in honour of Yusuf Ali (SAN). The book reviewed by Prof. Olanrewaju Fablgbohun, SAN, Vice-Chancellor Lagos State University, Ojo, was edited by Prof. Wahab Egbewole, SAN, Kehinde Kolawole Eleja, SAN and Ayo Olanrewaju.
Babalakin who lamented the dwindling standard of learning in the country said except the lawyers accept to save the legal profession, it will soon become part of the decay in the country.
He said members of the profession have a responsibility to rescue the profession from further decay and only those in the profession can salvage the situation.
He said what we call tutorial in our universities is a far cry, saying in a law class of 400 students to a teacher is not tutorial. He cited his days in the university where it uses to be a student to a teacher for a tutorial.
He said the standard expected in the profession must be in tandem with global best practices where the profession enjoys continual improvements and the low standard in the country must be reversed.
Babalakin said, “Only the lawyers can save the legal profession, the legal profession is threatened unless lawyers come together and realize that we have to protect our law by speaking the truth and all situation irrespective of who is affected, we will become part of the decay of the nation. we are at a very difficult threshold as a country.
“We have created a very low standard which is what is now the benchmark. My take is can we in this part of the world, continue to deteriorate, while those in other parts of the world who we are supposed to compete with, continue to improve.”
He also commended the honouree for what he has achieved and hoping that the book will be reference materials for students and members of the bar.
President, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mr Olumide Akpata on his part charged the senior advocates on the need to join hands with him to move the NBA forward.
He maintained that he will keep to his promise to give those at the inner members of bar their due place.
He said, “Today I renew my commitment and by the same token, I charge members of the Inner Bar to join hands with me to build an enviable Nigeria Bar Association, which our children will be proud off and at your own very high standard expected of the bar.”
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