The Supreme Court has, in a veiled response to the CITY LAWYER report on the screening of applicants for award of the coveted rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), tacitly vouched for the award process.

In an unusually elaborate pre-swearing in statement signed by its Director, Press & Information, Dr. Festus Akande, the apex court outlined the processes that led to the conferment of the rank to the new members of the Inner Bar.

CITY LAWYER had gathered from an unimpeachable source that while the Legal Practitioners’ Privileges Committee (LPPC) had set a high cumulative 90 per cent benchmark to be scaled by all applicants at the final screening exercise, at least three applicants failed to meet that threshold. The committee however opted to award the rank to the three applicants nonetheless.

But in an apparent response to the CITY LAWYER report, the apex court noted that 114 applications were received from eligible applicants comprising 101 advocates and 13 academics.

Dwelling extensively on the screening process, the apex court stated that “The total number of qualified Applicants shortlisted after the Advocates 1st and 2nd Filtration Stages, Academic Pre-qualification, Academic 2nd Filtration Exercise, the Independent Appeals Hearing and Chambers Inspection Exercises, etc., was 69; comprising 57 advocates and 12 academics.

“After conducting the specified screening and filtration exercises which include a number of appearances in superior courts, recommendations by Hon. Justices of the Supreme Court and Hon. Judges of superior courts, Chamber inspections; approval on eligibility and integrity of the candidates from the Nigerian Bar Association, Body of Senior Advocates of Nigeria and, of course, the general public, amongst others, the LPPC came up with 58 successful candidates. Out of this number, 57 are advocates while one is an academic.”

The full list includes the following: “Funmi Falana, Felix Offia, Lawrence Falade, Kingsley Obamogie, Folashade Alli, Abiola Oyebanji, Bomo Agbebi, Daniel Uruakpa, Oseloka Osuigwe, Babatunde Adeoye, Babaseyi Joseph, Emmanuel Enoidem, Kehinde Aina, Ngozi Olehi, Aaron Okoroma, Ibrahim Angulu, Olayiwola Afolabi, Sule Shu’aibu, Abiodun Olaleru, Kazeem Sobaloju and Shehu Abdullahi.

Others are: “Fidelis Mbadugha, Onyemaechi Adikwu, Ikechukwu Onuoma, Yakubu Philemon, Johnny Agim, Aliyu Ibrahim, Isaiah Bozimo, Prisca Ozoilesike, Hahaha Santana, Adedayo Adedeji, Adeola Adedipe, Chikaosolu Ojukwu, Musa Attah, Ayotunde Ogunleye, Olayemi Badewole and Babatunde Adetunji, Alfred Atteh.

Also on the list are: Bamidele Ibironke, Oluwaseyilayo Akinkunmi, Felix Okorotie, Seun Ajayi, Friday Onoja, Agada Elachi, Bola Gold, Paul Maduemene, Rafiu Balogun, Oluwole Aladedoye, Paulyn Adhulimen, Jonathan Taidi, Tochukwu Onyiuke, Olukayode Ajulo, Christopher Umar, Chibueze Ogbonna, Yemi Adeshina, Omoyemi Akangbe, Olumide Olujinmi, Musa Aliyu.”

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