A leading aspirant in the forthcoming Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Port Harcourt Branch Elections, Mrs. Cordelia Eke has urged young lawyers to break out of their “comfort zone” and network in order to boost their career.

Speaking recently at the monthly meeting of the NBA Young Lawyers Forum (NBA-YLF), Port Harcourt Branch, Eke, who is also a Director in the Rivers State Ministry of Justice, dwelt on the topic, “NETWORKING AS A TOOL FOR CAREER ADVANCEMENT IN THE LEGAL PROFESSION.”

She noted that “Staying in your comfort zone is not going to put food on your table; you have to break out. I had to learn to socialize; as a young lawyer, I went to law firms to ask to handle their briefs. I learnt how to relate with seniors as a young lawyer.”

Saying that she was “shy almost to the point of timidity” as a young person, she however noted that she had to “break out” by joining NBA committees. “It gave me access to a lot of people,” she said, adding that “As a young lawyer, my wedding was well attended; Chief Okey Wali SAN attended, among other Bar Leaders. Though I didn’t know so much as a young lawyer, I learnt to speak up.”

The former Secretary of the Electoral Committee of the NBA (ECNBA) urged young lawyers not to ignore peer-to-peer networking, adding that they must be trustworthy and exhibit honesty in all their dealings with professional colleagues and others.

She warned against “looking down” on court registrars or other classes, noting that they could be very helpful in some circumstances.

The Bar Leader noted that her network has helped in boosting her career and professional development as a practitioner and President of the 1995 Law School Class.

She also advised that young lawyers should break out and network with delegates outside their usual network especially during conferences, adding that this has led to new opportunities for some lawyers.

Eke urged young lawyers to “network upwards” with senior lawyers as this could lead to recommendations for committee roles or new briefs, urging them to also explore networking opportunities in churches, clubs, and through volunteering.

On virtual networking, she noted that young lawyers should be more adept at this than senior lawyers, saying that “LinkedIn is top on my list. You also have Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter among others.”

Her words: “The important thing is to look for the opportunity to break out of the norm. Make yourself known, get involved and look for opportunity to showcase your talent. There are people who have travelled abroad via LinkedIn.”

Continuing, she said: “LinkedIn is a purely professional network. It connects you to influencers, experts, prospective mentors; it gives you an opportunity to showcase yourself professionally, and allows you to join some trade groups.”

Commending the Bar Leader for her speech, the Chairman of NBA-YLF Port Harcourt Branch, Dr. Victor Enebeli decried the invasion of the venue by hired thugs, saying: “I am not here as a political chairman; I am here as a chairman to lead.”

He added that Mrs. Eke was invited in her own right, saying: “We know quality when we see one; we know experience when we see one.”

The highlight of the session was when one young lawyer Godswill Okuru attested to getting a job placement via networking with Mrs. Eke.

The speech by Eke received intermittent applause from the excited audience in the parked hall.

Among those who attended the session are former NBA Assistant General Secretary, Mr. Okey Ohagba and former NBA Port Harcourt Branch Chairman, Mr. Sylvester Adaka. Others are two former chairmen of NBA YLF Port Harcourt Branch, Messrs Chisor Kejeh and Felix Ikpo. 

To join our CITY LAWYER platform on WhatsApp, click here

To join our Telegram platform, click here 

COPYRIGHT 2022 CITY LAWYER. Please send emails to Join us on Facebook at and on “X” (TWITTER) at To ADVERTISE in CITY LAWYER or for Special Features, please email or call 08138380083.

All materials available on this Website are protected by copyright, trade mark and other proprietary and intellectual property laws. You may not use any of our intellectual property rights without our express written consent or attribution to However, you are permitted to print or save to your individual PC, tablet or storage extracts from this Website for your own personal non-commercial use.