PHOTO: L-R Prof. Oluyemisi Bamgbose SAN, immediate past NBAWF Chairperson; Prof J. J. Dawuni, Founder and Executive Director, IAWL and Chinyere Okorocha, NBAWF Chairperson

The Institute of African Women in Law (IAWL) will in collaboration with the Nigerian Bar Association Women Forum (NBAWF) launch three reports on Women in Law and Leadership in the Legal Profession.

The report will be unveiled today at Radisson Blu, Victoria Island, Lagos. It spotlights women in the Nigerian bar, bench and academy, and is aimed to inform policy actions.

The reports summarize the empirical findings gathered on women in law and leadership as part of strategic actions under the Women in Law and Leadership (WILL) initiative of the Institute for African Women in Law. WILL is crucial because of the legal system’s unique role in addressing gender-based discrimination. Women’s unique perspectives, participation, and leadership in the justice system are valuable tools in achieving goal number five (#5) of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on gender equality by ensuring the specific interests and priorities of women are represented in decision-making processes.

Key actors in the legal profession including judges of superior courts of record, leading academics and top law firms, as well as diplomatic missions and philanthropic organizations will be present at the launch. Speaking about the reports and the launch, J. Jarpa Dawuni (PhD), Founder and Executive Director, IAWL stated that “the Institute for African Women in Law’s five-year strategic goal of Women in Law and Leadership is aimed at accelerating systems change for women in leadership. These reports are a first step to informing policy actions. We will work with our country partners, the NBAWF to expand opportunities for women in law in Nigeria”.

According to the Chairperson of NBAWF, Chinyere Okorocha, “The NBAWF is proud to have collaborated with the IAWL on this laudable report. It is a rich source of data on the issues affecting women leaders in the sector and we look forward to partnering with stakeholders to implement the recommended solutions”.

She also acknowledged her predecessor, Prof. Oluyemisi Bamgbose SAN, under whose leadership the collaboration was initiated, as well as the Head of NBAWF Research and Documentation Committee, Dr. Adejoke Oyewunmi, who led the NBAWF team.

The NBAWF is an arm of the Nigerian Bar Association committed to empowering, inspiring and supporting female legal professionals in Nigeria. Since its inauguration in 2019, the NBAWF has served as a platform for advocacy for female lawyers, championing the promotion and appointment of female lawyers to well-deserved positions, and empowering female lawyers through mentorship and exposure to national and international workshops.

The Institute for African Women in Law (IAWL) is a pan-African non-profit, non-governmental organization committed to supporting the formidable works of women in law across the continent of Africa and the Diaspora. Its goal is to be a focal point for addressing issues across the legal and judicial sectors. Its vision is to build a network of legal professionals devoted to using the law as a tool for positive social change and development. The Institute’s four-step strategy includes enhancing potential, nurturing leadership, creating opportunities and building partnerships.

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