BY EMEKA NWADIOKE
The Director-General of the Nigerian Law School, Prof. Isa Hayatu Chiroma SAN yesterday rated the leading vocational training institution highly, saying its graduates posted over 70 per cent success rate at the Bar Final examinations held last January.
In his address at the Call to Bar ceremony held yesterday, Chiroma traced the “humble beginning” of the school in 1963 “with 8 students at its one block Campus at 213A, Igbosere Road, Lagos,” and observed that “the Nigerian Law School has grown to a six-Campus Institution spread across the country with a yearly intake of well over 6,000 (six thousand) students as stated above.”
A fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK), the Law School chief executive said that the school has enjoyed unbroken academic sessions in its 58-year history, attributing the feat to “the insistence of the Council of Legal Education on the good character of the students as a condition for both admission into the Law School and recommendation for Call to the Bar.”
Chiroma stated that while 1,779 of the 2,515 candidates who sat for the Bar Finals scaled the hurdle, five of the candidates or 0.2 per cent bagged First Class Honours. Seventy-six (3.06%) candidates received Second Class Upper grade while 633 (25.17%) candidates were graded in Second Class Lower rank. Another 1,065 (42.43%) candidates recorded a Pass grade.
His words: “These figures translate to 70.86% success at the Bar Final Examinations. I wish to assure all of you that we shall remain the gate keepers of our noble profession. As Teachers and Administrators, we will continue to uphold the standard and integrity of the Bar.”
Chiroma stated that the knowledge “acquired and expressed” by candidates “brings great joy to the entire Nigerian Law School Community,” adding: “After your Call to the Bar, you will become new wigs of the Nigerian Bar and proud members of our noble profession. I rejoice and congratulate you all for your hard work, dedication and steadfastness. To all our proud parents, guardians and relations, I invite you all to share in the success and joy of these candidates we are celebrating today.”
On the contributions of the Law School to national development, Chiroma noted that both the Chief Justice of Nigeria and the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice among others are all alumni of the school, adding that “It is also significant to note that a large number of members of other tiers of government in the country are products of the School.
“The school has also contributed to the training of the legal man-power for our sister African countries like the Republic of the Gambia, the Republic of Sierra Leone and the Republic of Cameroun. A number of countries from East and West Africa have visited the Law school to solicit information and assistance on the establishment and development of the Law School in their various countries. As reported in my address to your distinguished body at the last Call ceremony the Nigerian Law School received a high powered delegation from the Law Development Centre, Uganda, who were in Nigeria on bench marking and working visit to the Nigerian Law School and more of such collaborations have continued to come.
“Products of the School have commanding presence in other spheres of public and private sector such as the Ex-Military, Police, Customs, Immigration, the Oil and Gas sector, Banking and Finance, Insurance and the Corporate world in general, Professors/lecturers in the Universities and other tertiary institutions. Some of these products have achieved profound feat of getting to the top of their career nationally and across borders.”
Chiroma thanked President Muhammadu Buhari “for all the proactive measures taken aimed at curbing the spread and eradication of the disease in our dear country.” Turning to Malami, the Law School Director-General said: “May I at this time respectfully seek the leave of Mr. Chairman and distinguished members of the Body of Benchers, to thank our supervisory Ministry – the Federal Ministry of Justice headed by the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN, Life Bencher for the support always given to us as an institution.”
Showering encomiums on the Council of Legal Education chaired by leading litigator and Bar Leader, Chief Emeka Ngige SAN for its oversight, Chiroma said: “I will also wish to thank the Chairman and Members of the Council of Legal Education, our parent body for their support and guidance at all times.
“The same appreciation goes to the Chairman and members of the Body of Benchers for their constant support and encouragement. I must also mention the Secretariat of the distinguished body for its co-operation with us at all times. Not even the COVID-19 pandemic could hold your body from discharging your primary and essential duties with the usual and huge cooperation of the Council of Legal Education and staff of Nigerian Law School.”
Chiroma congratulated Mr. Olumide Akpata for his victory at the poll while thanking the immediate past NBA President, Mr. Paul Usoro, SAN “for his contribution to the Nigerian Law School, Nigerian Bar Association and the Legal Profession in general.”
Among those admitted to the Nigerian Bar at the ceremony held at the Eagle Square, Abuja was veteran Nollywood actor, Mr. Kanayo O. Kanayo MFR.
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