‘NO REFORM WITHOUT COLLATERAL DAMAGE,’ SAYS AKPATA
VOWS THAT TCCP DID THEIR BEST
The immediate past Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) President, Mr. Olumide Akpata has stated that no association that is keen on reforms can achieve results without disagreement and collateral damage.
In his valedictory message to NBA members, Akpata stated that “Our stance on certain issues may also have been viewed differently by others, but overall, I am convinced that any leadership that seeks to uphold standards, is committed to reforms, and wants to make meaningful progress would be unable to do so without some disagreement and collateral damage.”
He also gave himself a pat on the back for his two-year stewardship as NBA President, saying: “I do not pretend that we could not have done more, but I am pleased with how far we have come, even if I say so myself.”
He had earlier explained the circumstances leading to the shortage of conference materials for the just concluded NBA Annual General Conference, urging NBA members to “show some empathy to the TCCP who did their best in the circumstance.”
Akpata had yesterday handed the mantle of leadership to Mr. Yakubu Maikyau SAN at a well-attended Inauguration Ceremony held in Lagos.
Below is the full text of the statement.
To view highlights of his stewardship, click here.
As I take a bow: An Account of Service and a Note of Appreciation
My Dear Colleague,
I am writing to let you know that this is the last email that you would be receiving from me as President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA). This afternoon, the two-year mandate that you graciously gave me to serve as President of the NBA would come to an end. I am grateful to you and all other members of our great Association for the confidence that was reposed in me.
When I sought your mandate two years ago, it was clear to me that we needed to take the NBA on a different trajectory from where it was travelling. I had envisioned an Association that would be value adding to its members and the society. One which, as I often described it, has “utilitarian” value. I am pleased that many aspects of that vision have been, while others are being, realised. With your support, we have not only done much, but also created an implementable blueprint for the Association, which we hope can be followed in keeping our Association and profession on track. On that note, I wish the new team led by Y.C Maikyau, SAN the best on their sojourn, and I am confident that they will sustain the tempo and drive to completion those policies that we, for time and other reasons, could not.
Having completed our mandate, I believe that it is only proper to provide you with an account of our service. A highlight of some of our activities and achievements over the last two years even in the face of numerous challenges is attached and can also be found here (https://nigerianbar.org.ng/selected-highlights-olumide-akpatas-scorecard-nba-president-2020-2022). I do not pretend that we could not have done more, but I am pleased with how far we have come, even if I say so myself.
I am grateful to you for the fine combination of National Officers that you elected to serve with me. Both individually and as a team, we have made mistakes (and learnt from them), had a few disagreements and agreed on most, and taken decisions that may not have been acceptable to all. Our stance on certain issues may also have been viewed differently by others, but overall, I am convinced that any leadership that seeks to uphold standards, is committed to reforms, and wants to make meaningful progress would be unable to do so without some disagreement and collateral damage.
I also appreciate the leadership and members of all the Committees of the NBA that we set up to decentralize the functions at the NBA and to drive our vision. But for their altruistic service and sacrifice to the Bar, we would not have achieved much. I am equally grateful to my in-house advisory and support team and all those who did a great job at ensuring that we stayed on course in delivering on our promises.
Lastly, many thanks to my Partners and colleagues at my law firm – Templars- for allowing me time off these last two years to focus fully on the selfless task of serving the Bar – our Bar.
As I take a bow, I hope that our paths cross again, but until then it has truly been a pleasure serving you.
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